Inside the Chamber

Photo of patients in a hyperbaric chamber

Our hyperbaric facility consists of a multi chamber that can accommodate several patients at one time. Specially trained medical personnel will be with you at all times, and additional personnel and medical supplies can be brought into the chamber at any time if needed. The department is capable of managing all patient needs.

The chamber is pressurized with air, while oxygen is administered to you through a head tent. Oxygen is given to you in two segments with a five-minute air break also provided. You and the medical personnel with you are in constant contact with personnel outside the chamber.

During pressurizing, your ears will feel full, similar to the feeling when traveling in the mountains or flying. To help relieve this, take a breath and blow it out gently through your nose while holding your mouth and nose closed. Swallowing, moving your jaw (chewing) and yawning also help. If you still have problems, tell the chamber personnel and the pressurization will be stopped until your ears are cleared.

As the air flows into the chamber, you will notice a hissing type noise and an increase in air temperature. Once the prescribed pressure is reached, the air will be exchanged to cool the chamber to a comfortable temperature. This is called a "vent." Should you feel too warm, please let the chamber personnel know; vents are easy to do.

When the chamber's pressure is slowly released at the end of treatment (decompression), you may notice a popping in your ears, along with some noise and a cooling temperature. You do not need to clear your ears at this time. Just breathe normally; DO NOT HOLD YOUR BREATH.

For more information, please call the Department of Hyperbaric Medicine at 410-328-6152. For all patient information, please call 410-328-9284.

This page was last updated: July 30, 2013

         
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