New announcement. Learn more

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy in Wellington

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
is beneficial for

  • Head injury/concussion recovery and post-concussion syndrome recovery 

  • Long covid recovery 

  • Healing wounds 

  • Stroke recovery

  • Recovery from chemo and radiation injury

  • Foot ulcers or stoma ulcers

  • Inflammatory bowel disease such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s

  • Increasing energy- helping you sleep.

  • Anti-aging and collagen production in the skin.

  • Sleep apnea

Ralf Hawley

Experienced (since 2015) Hyperbaric Oxygen Technician


Under normal circumstances, oxygen is transported throughout the body only by red blood cells. With HBOT, oxygen is dissolved into all of the body's fluids, the plasma, the central nervous system fluids, the lymph, and the bone. It can be carried to areas where circulation is diminished or blocked. In this way, extra oxygen can reach all of the damaged tissues and the body can support its own healing process. The increased oxygen greatly enhances the ability of white blood cells to kill bacteria, reduces swelling and allows new blood vessels to grow more rapidly in the affected areas. It is a simple, non-invasive and painless treatment.

​​There are two basic types of HBOT— 'high pressure HBOT' and 'mild HBOT'. With high pressure HBOT, treatments are delivered in a hard-sided chamber typically at pressures greater than 1.5 ATA and using 100% oxygen from oxygen tanks. Mild HBOT refers to hyperbaric oxygen therapy at lower pressures, typically 1.5 ATA or below, and the use of an oxygen concentrator delivering 90-95% oxygen inside a soft or hard chamber.

While high pressure HBOT with 100% oxygen may result in greater oxygen saturation in the tissues, many conditions respond better to mild HBOT. In clinical trials regarding neurological conditions to date, there has been virtually no difference in clinical outcome between mild HBOT and high pressure HBOT. We have the most modern and comfortable hard-sided mild HBOT chambers available for use. They provide a graded pressure increase up to 1.5ATA in pressure which is like being 5m under the sea. We use powerful 10 litre oxygen concentrators to provide 93% oxygen and medical grade silicon tubing and cannulas or masks for your oxygen delivery in the chamber. In our chambers at 1.5ATA and breathing in 93% oxygen, your plasma and tissue oxygen saturation is calculated to increase by 5-7 times. That is an average increase of 500% more oxygen than usual being delivered to your tissues.

Looking for more information? Read Research on Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy FAQ's

What are the benefits of HBOT?

Benefits provided by mild hyperbaric oxygen therapy are the result of extra oxygen being carried to
the tissues and organs of your body, providing you with one or more of the following effects:

  • Improved oxygen delivery to injured tissue

  • Increased healing rates of overused and traumatised tissue

  • Increased blood vessel formation (angiogenesis)

  • Powerful anti-inflammatory effect

  • Advanced wound healing

  • Improved infection control, as higher levels of oxygen have a natural antibiotic effect

  • Preservation of damaged tissues

  • Elimination and reduction of effects from toxic substances

  • Reduction or elimination of tissue obstruction by gas bubbles

  • Stem cell proliferation and mitochondrial switching

  • Immune system normalisation

  • Reduction of oedema/swelling around damaged tissues

Mild HBOT is widely promoted overseas and utilised as a preventative, recuperative, and restorative therapy for a wide variety of diseases and conditions. It is also used by athletes to enhance performance and speed healing time; it is good for you!

What Conditions are Treated with HBOT?

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used internationally for more than 80 different conditions. Research variously supports its use for athletic injuries and performance, arthritis, autism, attention deficit disorder, auto-immune disorders, Bell’s Palsy, brain and head injuries, cardiovascular disease, cerebral palsy, Crohn’s disease, dermatological conditions, diabetes, dementia, interstitial cystitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and ulcerative colitis, Lyme disease, learning disabilities, macular degeneration, migraine, multiple sclerosis, neuropathies, pervasive development disorders, PTSD, reflex sympathetic dystrophy, reconstructive surgery, spinal cord injury, stroke, and more. Research is showing that it may be effective as an anti-aging and cancer prevention strategy. Research shows it also works alongside chemotherapy treatment to improve the tumour cell killing effectiveness by 30%.

High pressure HBOT is FDA approved to treat air or gas embolism, carbon monoxide & cyanide poisoning, crush injury, acute traumatic ischaemia, decompression sickness, delayed radiation injury, diabetic foot ulcers, enhanced healing of problem wounds, exceptional blood loss, gas gangrene, intracranial abscess, necrotising soft tissue infections, osteomyelitis (refractory), skin grafts and flaps (compromised), and thermal burns.

All other conditions treated by hyperbaric chambers are considered off-label uses. Many of these uses are quite commonplace in countries such as the USA, Russia, China, Japan, Italy, Australia and the U.K.

How should i expect mild HBOT to feel?

During your HBOT session you will be lying down inside the chamber, relaxing comfortably with your head supported by soft pillows. While inside the chamber you can rest, read, meditate or take a nap. Although the chamber is warm you will be offered a blanket. You will breathe concentrated oxygen (90-95% O2) through a cannula or face mask. 

Our well trained and experienced technician will be with you throughout your first ’dive’ and will be in constant communication with you during this time and subsequent treatments as required. They will gradually pressurise  the chamber up to 1.5 ATA and will keep checking with you to ensure you are completely comfortable. If you wish, your technician can teach you how to have complete control of the pressure in the chamber. You are also able to contact an assistant with the buzzer and speak with them on the built in intercom at any time.

You may hear a variety of noises: the sound of air moving through pipes and valves and some clicking noises. Whenever the chamber reaches a new gauge of pressure, it is maintained by ‘flushing’ of air out of the tank via a vent. This is all part of normal operation.

As the pressure in the hyperbaric chamber increases, the volume of air in any air spaces in your body is affected.  The major air spaces in your body include your lungs, middle ear, gastrointestinal tract, and your sinuses.  Your body is capable of equalising most of these air spaces by breathing normally. You may feel fullness in your ears similar to what you may have sometimes experienced in elevators or flying in an airplane.  This pressure can be relieved by a simple equalisation procedures that your technician will show you prior to your entering the tank. They will monitor you and will not continue with pressurisation until any discomfort has gone. If you have mild congestion, you can still go ahead and benefit from a dive at a slower rate of compression. A dive at 1.2 ATA vs 1.5 is still therapeutic should discomfort prevent further compression. EarPlanes ear plugs are used for flying and are available to purchase but ear problems usually resolve after the first few dives. If you have problems equalising or a history of ear infections and/or glue ear, our osteopaths can use gentle techniques to assist the opening of the eustachian tube which drains your middle ear, allowing your ears to equalise more easily.

Changing pressure affects temperature.  As pressure increases the temperature increases through 
heat of compression.  As pressure decreases temperature will decrease as well.  During and directly after descent or pressurisation you may notice that the temperature increases.  During ascent or depressurisation you may notice that the temperature gets slightly cooler. There is a blanket in the chamber if you are feeling cold.

If you are experiencing any parasitic or microbial infections such as Lyme disease or Candida, you may experience a temporary exacerbation of symptoms early in treatment as those organisms die off and your system detoxifies. Exercise, saunas, drinking extra water or detoxifying teas, and herbal supplements may be helpful in facilitating the detoxifying process.

When your session ends and the chamber is gradually depressurised, you will emerge feeling more oxygenated. Some people report feeling more relaxed after a session. Others describe feeling a sense of mental clarity, as HBOT is good for brain fog and is particularly
helpful in addressing brain fog related to Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, radiation treatment, and chemotherapy.

How do I get to access Hyperbaric Oxygen help for my health?

​First you will need to book a thirty minute HBOT Medical with Dr Melanie Young, our Registered Osteopath and Hyperbaric Director, to check your current health status and determine the optimal QRS mat and HBOT chamber protocol and frequency for you. She will provide this plan to our experienced Hyperbaric technician, Ralf Hawley. We may also recommend a follow up assessment at certain intervals during your chamber sessions to check on your progress.

How should I prepare for treatment?

Before each mHBOT session we recommend you either see one of our Registered Osteopaths or Acupuncturists for a treatment to balance your nervous system and improve blood flow, or have an eight minute session on our German designed and manufactured QRS mat which provides a low frequency pulsed electrical magnetic field to prepare your body by opening up the ion channels in your cell membranes. The QRS mat is included in the cost of your HBOT session.

To enhance your treatment and especially in the case of conditions such as cancer, high dose Vitamin C  taken just before you go into the chamber will assist the effectiveness of the oxygen flooding your cells. Bring in your own vitamins, ideally in powdered form, to mix into filtered water and drink just before your session or one of our hyperbaric technicians of the options available at the practice for you.

In general, people benefit from good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle. Eating prior to your appointment is helpful in maintaining a stable blood sugar during your treatment. Please note that no food or drinks are allowed in the chamber; however, if you have diabetes, we ask you to bring a suitable snack in case your blood sugar drops in the chamber.

If you smoke, we recommend no nicotine for several hours before and after your appointment to gain the most benefits from your treatment. If you use a nicotine patch, we recommend that you remove it for several hours before and after your treatment. The longer you avoid nicotine, the more tissue oxygenation will be able to benefit you.

Please do not wear any fragrances/perfumes and we ask that you put your phone into flight mode before you enter the HBOT room. If you need to keep in contact, for example, with your child, our hyperbaric technician will monitor your phone and let you know if they call.

To sum up your preparation for the chamber:

  • Wear comfortable clothing, ideally of natural fibres. You will need to remove belts and shoes before getting into the chamber. Please don't wear perfume on the day.

  • Have a drink of water and go to the bathroom, you don't want to cut your session short with an urgent need.

  • Switch your phone to flight mode and leave it outside the chamber 

  • You may like to bring a book or we provide current magazines. Alternatively an eye mask can help you have a wonderful sleep in the chamber

  • Discuss with your Hyperbaric Technician if you could benefit from a pre-chamber vitamin boosting drink.

  • Please inform your Hyperbaric Technician if you have any changes in health status such as a change in medication, a sinus or ear infection, or that you may be pregnant.

Do I go on the QRS mat before or after my HBOT session?

Due to the action of the QRS mat's electromagnetic field, we suggest you lie on it before your HBOT treatment. Research has  shown that the Quantron Resonance System stimulates the action potential of the cell, increases cell functioning and metabolism. It opens the cell to oxygen, vitamins and minerals. However, the QRS will still benefit you after the HBOT if time didn't allow you lie on the mat before your HBOT treatment. 

Can I communicate when I am in the chamber?

​Yes, you will be able to talk with your Hyperbaric technician at any time via the built-in intercom. You also have a buzzer.

Can I control the chamber myself?

​​Yes you can. Your Hyperbaric technician will show you how to do this if you wish. They will also show you how to turn off the pressure at any time and how to press a release valve for quick decompression.

How frequently should I receive treatment?

How many treatments needed will vary according to the type of health issue you are managing. Studies show that frequency of treatment is important in achieving optimal outcomes.

A health issue that has only recently started or an acute injury such as a very recent concussion are likely to respond quickly. This is because long-term tissue and cellular changes have not taken place. Preparing for surgery usually requires only a couple of sessions and then follow-up as soon as possible after surgery to reduce infection rates and speed recovery. Sports people find that a session after hard training enables them to recover quickly and train harder.

For very long standing/chronic health conditions our Hyperbaric Director is likely to recommend an initial group of 40 sessions, 60-90 minutes in duration, 5-6 days per week. 

Is Mild HBOT Safe?  Are there any risks?

Generally, mild hyperbaric oxygen therapy is very safe. Otic barotrauma (ear pain) can occur due to difficulty equalising ear pressure. It is typically quite temporary and easily controlled. Yawning or swallowing can remedy it—similar to what one would do when taking off and landing in an airplane.

Are there any reasons a person should not go into a mild hyperbaric chamber

The only absolute contraindications to mild HBOT are pneumothorax and air-trapping emphysema. 
Other issues such as seizures, myopia (nearsightedness), cataracts, and oxygen toxicity do not relate to mild HBOT therapy as they are unheard of at pressures of 1.5 ATA and below.

In the following cases, going into the chamber should be avoided:

  • Acute asthma attack

  • Cardiac disease: patients with an ejection fraction less than 35% are contraindicated for therapy

  • Congenital spherocytosis (due to the fragility of the red blood cells)

  • COPD or Emphysema with CO2 entrapment; in combination with HBOT this might lead to pneumothorax

  • High Fever

  • History of recent thoracic surgery; this is usually not a problem although caution should be taken as there might be air entrapped in chest wounds.

  • Retinal detachment repair with ‘oil bubble’ present

  • Optic neuritis

  • Uncontrolled seizure disorder

  • Upper respiratory infections or ear infection; this might make it difficult for patients to equalise the pressure in their ears or sinuses during the treatment

If you are taking the following medications you should speak with your primary healthcare provider prior to receiving mild HBOT.

  • Cis-Platinum—a chemotherapy agent

  • Disulfiram (Antabuse®)—an oral tablet used to treat chronic alcoholism

  • Doxorubicin (Adriamycin®)—a chemotherapy agent

  • Mafenide Acetate (Sulfamylon®)—a topical cream used to prevent and treat bacterial or fungal  infections

Pregnancy is a relative contraindication. If you think you may be pregnant please speak with your Hyperbaric technician.

What does Mild HBOT cost and what are the session times?

The HBOT medical is $95 for 30 minutes with Dr Melanie Young, Registered Osteopath and Hyperbaric Director, she will assess you medically, find out your goals and develop the optimal HBOT protocol and plan of care for you. 

If the cost of the mHBOT chamber sessions are too much for you, please let Dr Young know as we try to help people to access the treatment they need. We especially provide discounts for children.

Our chambers are supplied by powerful 10L flow oxygen concentrators at 93% concentration which is considerably more than the standard oxygen concentrator usually supplied with the chamber. We researched extensively and went to extra expense to find the best oxygen concentrator to use with the chamber. In our chambers at 1.5ATA and breathing in 93% oxygen, your plasma and tissue oxygen saturation is calculated to increase by 5-7 times. That is an average increase of 500% more oxygen than usual being delivered to your tissues. Also we only use medical grade silicon tubing throughout, plus medical grade silicon masks and cannulas for your benefit.

Initial one-off 90 minute session in one of our chambers is $125.00 

For 10 sessions the charge is $120.00 for 90 minutes, total is $1200.00

For 20 sessions the charge is $104.00 for 90 minutes, total is $2080.00

For 40 sessions the charge is $93.00 for 90 minutes, total is $3720.00

Initial one-off 60 minute session in one of our chambers the charge is $95.00

For 10 sessions the charge is $94.00 for 60 minutes, total is $940.00
 For 20 sessions the charge is $90.00 for 60 minutes, total is $1800.00  

 For 40 sessions the charge is $86.00 for 60 minutes, total is $3440.00

(Note: The cost of QRS mat treatment is included in the chamber cost)

It's hard for me to afford the treatment that I need, what can I do?

If you are having trouble managing financially, then please speak with our Practice Manager. We may be able to provide a discount for patients who need many ongoing chamber sessions. We have been known to give discounts for children and people in sincere need on a case by case basis. Crowd funding has also been a successful option.

How do I get started?

Ring our reception on 04 4991439 to book in for your 30 minute HBOT medical. Then you can usually get started shortly after that, as booking times allow.

Have questions about Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?

Just reach and and talk to us any time