Welcome to the Atlanta Hyperbaric blog

I will be posting commentary on different aspects of hyperbaric medicine, especially about the use of hyperbaric oxygen to treat neurologic injury and disease. But, any medical issue I find interesting in hyperbaric medicine will probably find its way into this space, sooner or later. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or elsewhere, please feel free to post questions, comments or other remarks. I will do my best to answer questions and, if I don’t know the answer, I’ll try to find someone who does. I started Atlanta Hyperbaric in 1987, so I have a lot of clinical experience in hyperbaric medicine to draw on. I hope we’ll get some good discussions going and learn something at the same time.

I want to start out taking a look at a recent study on the use of hyperbaric oxygen to treat patients with autism. Dr. Rossignol and his associates in Melbourne, Florida collected 62 patients with autism into a randomized, controlled, double blind trial to see if hyperbaric oxygen is of benefit to these kids. The treatment protocol Dr. Rossignol chose was a little different than what we customarily use at Atlanta Hyperbaric to treat our brain injury patients—we use the protocol that the late Dr. Richard Neubauer, the great pioneer of hyperbaric oxygen treatment for brain injuries, developed—however, I think that Dr. Rossignol’s conclusions are applicable to our patients at Atlanta Hyperbaric.

Immediately after completing 40 one-hour hyperbaric treatments delivered over a four-week time frame, the hyperbaric oxygen treatment group showed statistical improvements in a variety of clinical areas compared to the control group, including measures of irritability, hyperactivity, speech and cognitive awareness.

What does Dr. Rossignol’s study prove? Although it is easy to carp at the relatively small number of patients, the lack of follow up and the placebo response, it is not so easy to dismiss the statistically significant differences between the hyperbaric oxygen treatment and placebo groups. Besides, other available double-blind studies in autism treatment suffer from the identical kinds of problems as Dr. Rossignol’s–this study is at least as well designed as any other in autism that I have seen. It is extremely difficult or maybe even impossible to fund and conduct an ideal double-blind study in autism.

Hyperbaric oxygen is a treatment known to improve brain blood flow by stimulating the growth of new blood vessels into areas of reduced blood flow. Other researchers have shown with SPECT and PET scans that the bulk of autistic children have low blood flow in the areas of the brain believed to be responsible for the behavioral manifestations. Because conventional treatment of autism is supportive, rather than curative, I believe Dr. Rossignol’s study is important. And, the new blood vessels that hyperbaric oxygen stimulates are believed to be permanent, so the potential of hyperbaric oxygen is that it can permanently improve symptoms in autistic children. To me, that’s exciting.

Glenn L. Goodhart, M.D., J.D.

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About Public Protection Lawyer

lawyer and physician
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4 Responses to Welcome to the Atlanta Hyperbaric blog

  1. GarykPatton says:

    How soon will you update your blog? I’m interested in reading some more information on this issue.

  2. Lynne Christer says:

    Dear Dr. Goodhart,
    My husband just underwent 240 sessions of HBOT for TBI. (Six months at twice a day, five days a week.) All those close to him have seen a difference. Our family Dr. said no change- it’s all suggestive. This injury was on-the-job. The accident happened June 16, 2006. I started my husband in treatment on January 19,2009 – July 10, 2009 was his last session. I went to Phoenix with an open mind and 30 days. Before the 30 days were over I knew we were going to stay longer. The therapy was working. I paid out-of-pocket. But strongly believe that because of my husbands improvement Workmen’s Comp. should pay the bill. That is the rub. Because it is unconventional therapy, I have been told that I wasted my money and that I was dealing with an unscrupuious business charging a great deal of money. This was put in a report by the Workmen’s Comp. Dr. who did the IME. I now believe so strongly in the therapy that I do not want to walk away. The hearing date is September 17, 2009. At present I am trying to reach as many people as I can to help me aquire all current testing and results on TBI’s. ( Note: While at the computer writing to you, my husband got up and for the FIRST time put his summer shorts on before finding me in the other room…It’s going to be a GREAT day.) Did I also mention that my husband is 74. We were at HBOT OF Arizona/ Lori Klauber 602-996-8327. My question to you is: Can you help with comments, reports, results etc. on HBOT. Thank you for taking the time to real this comment.
    Sincerely,
    Lynne Christer

    P. O. BOX 5171
    Page, Arizona 86040-5171
    928-353-2195
    928-660-9343 (cell)
    auglyn@thebigpond.com

  3. drgoodhart says:

    I am delighted to hear that your husband has done so well with hyperbaric oxygen treatments for his traumatic brain injury. Unfortunately, I’m not at all surprised at the way the Workers’ Compensation doctor has treated him. Wearing my lawyer hat for a moment (www.publicprotectionlawyer.com), I can tell you how it works in Georgia. The injured worker is assigned a physician from the employer’s approved panel of physicians called the Authorized Treating Physician or ATP. The ATP calls the shots: if he orders a treatment, the employer or his insurance carrier must pay for it. I have often had an ATP refer me patients, typically for the treatment of a work-related wound. If the employee and the employer disagree about a treatment, it will be up to the administrative law judge to resolve the impasse. In Georgia, the employee would have to present expert testimony to the judge to convince him to order the treatment. I am qualified to testify as an expert in hyperbaric oxygen therapy, and I would be happy to do so on your husband’s behalf, free of charge. Please have your attorney contact my office.

  4. You you could change the post subject title Welcome to the Atlanta Hyperbaric blog | Public Protection Lawyer's Blog to something more specific for your content you make. I enjoyed the post still.

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