A seasoned professional in medical equipment sales, Samuel Lehrer has developed a thorough understanding of growing trends in medical technology and has witnessed many industry breakthroughs during his career. Here, he discusses how hyperbaric oxygen therapy is trending in facilities across the country thanks to its potential to expedite wound healing in certain patients.
Samuel Lehrer graduated from the University of Florida in 1994 and has earned a high reputation in the medical sales industry over the years. He’s witnessed the growth of many novel medical technologies and has followed the rise of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in recent decades.
“During hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatments, patients’ bodies are exposed to high levels of oxygen––most times 100% oxygen––at high pressures,” says Samuel Lehrer. “The higher concentrations of pressure and oxygen fuel the healing process with more energy so it decreases the time it takes to heal wounds.”
Hyperbaric technology allows doctors to deliver expedited wound healing in two major ways that cater to either individual healing or a form of group therapy. In individual therapy, specialized machines shaped like tubes encase patients and are pumped with oxygen and increased pressure. Alternatively, special rooms have been built with the same technology on a larger scale so multiple patients can be brought in for therapy at once.
“Hyperbaric therapy has been around for at least a hundred years or more, though we’ve only recently improved it to be a mainstream, practical solution in medical facilities around the world,” says Samuel Lehrer. “It’s been used to treat radiation injuries, athletic injuries, burns, infections, skin grafts and more. It’s even proven useful in certain cases for treating conditions like autism, TBI, and strokes.”
The process of oxygen therapy is different depending on the individual or group approach. Larger hyperbaric oxygen chambers can hold up to a dozen people who all receive therapy at once. In individual therapy, patients lie on a table that slides into the monoplace, or clear plastic tube long enough to cover the entire body.
In either scenario, Samuel Lehrer says, patients will change into a cotton medical gown and asked to relax and breathe in normally as the chamber or room is sealed and filled with high concentrations of oxygen. Because the pressure in the room will rise to more than twice its normal level, patients’ ears tend to pop in the beginning. Facilities typically provide entertainment like TV or music during the therapy to make it more relaxing, and patients will be able to see and talk to their therapist throughout.
Afterwards, the room is depressurized, which may cause patients to feel groggy or lightheaded for a short while. Sessions may take a half hour or a couple of hours depending on the severity of the wounds and the desired outcome per session. The amount of treatments each patient receives again depends on the severity of the wound and how well it responds to hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
“It’s a painless therapy that is proving to have a lot of positive results for a range of conditions and injuries,” says Samuel Lehrer. “It’s likely we’ll see many more facilities offering hyperbaric oxygen therapy as we continue discovering more potential uses for it.”