Join our fight against dry mouth

Surviving from cancer is a massive achievement for many. Today’s technology in radiotherapy makes treatment more effective and potentially less damaging due to the ability to focus on the area that needs to receive radiation. There is, of course, some instances where collateral damage occurs to tissue which can lead to complications occurring some time after treatment has completed.

For head and neck cancer sufferers who have undergone treatment using radiation there is a possibility of saliva gland damage, which causes a condition known as xerostomia or dry mouth. This can negatively affect the patient’s quality of life, especially after surviving cancer. Xerostomia leaves people with a dry mouth and the inability to produce enough saliva which can cause difficulty with talking, eating and loss of taste resulting in poor nutrition, increased risk of dental decay and the inability to sleep well at night. And unfortunately, xerostomia can develop into an irreversible and life-long problem.

Wesley Hyperbaric wants to help alleviate these symptoms and is conducting a trial to help establish hyperbaric oxygen therapy as a viable treatment in patients suffering from xerostomia. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been successfully proven to help with soft tissue damage caused by radiation to other areas of the body, bringing hope that it can also be effective for salivary gland damage. Our trial will continue into 2019 to gain more information and produce evidence supporting the effectiveness of the treatment for the condition in the future.

Signs of xerostomia
  • Problems with eating, swallowing and talking continuously
  • Difficulty eating certain dry foods such as cereal
  • Denture issues such as fitting, sores or palate issues
  • Loss of taste
  • An increase in the need to drink water – especially at night
  • Dental and mouth issues such as inflammation, increased caries and ulcers.

Dr Ohnmar Aung, at Wesley Hyperbaric, is the principal investigator for this trial and is looking forward to helping more people suffering from Xerostomia. If you are interested in taking part in this trial, you will be able to help us gather scientific evidence and receive the treatment for free. All that is needed is that you have had radiation to the head and neck area and are now suffering from xerostomia and the ability to commit to taking part in a six-week program. You could be on the road to recovery as well as helping other people, in the future, who are suffering from the same conditions.

Please get in touch with us for more information on our services and to find out what the next steps are to take part in the trial.

Read our white paper on treating inflammatory bowel disease with HBOT

With an estimated 75,000 Australian’s living with inflammatory bowel disease and the numbers increasing each year there is good news around findings that hyperbaric oxygen therapy offers a solution.

As Australia’s pioneers in hyperbaric oxygen therapy, we have published a white paper on the topic. It covers the problems faced and offers up a solution complete with case studies to show the success in treating Crohn’s disease and also ulcerative colitis.

To find out more please access our white paper and learn more about how hyperbaric oxygen therapy can treat inflammatory bowel disease.

 

Living life after radiotherapy

If you or a loved one are one of the 1.2 million people every year who are diagnosed with an invasive cancer then the chances are this has come with a treatment with radiation. Whilst treatment has significantly improved over the years the resulting side effects can sometimes take its toll on the patient’s quality-of-life.

The radiation can sometimes cause complications with nutrients – including oxygen – from passing through the blood vessel walls. This lack of essential nutrients unfortunately hinder the healing of damaged tissues.

Here are some key facts about soft tissue radiation damage and hyperbaric oxygen therapy:

  • Occurs in less than 5% of people who undergo radiotherapy
  • Most commonly involves damage to the bladder or bowel
  • Most commonly noticed as blood in the urine and/or bowel movements
  • Randomized controlled trials have shown hyperbaric oxygen therapy can improve over 70% of people treated
  • Soft tissue radiation injury is the most common condition treated at Wesley Hyperbaric

The good news is that Wesley Hyperbaric has over two decades of experience treating people who suffer from soft tissue radiation injuries. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is also proven to work most of the time.

So if you, or a loved one, are unfortunate to suffer from any of the conditions outlined above then we can definitely look at helping you get your life back on track. Get in contact today and find out what the next steps might be. Alternatively, speak to your GP or specialist about getting a referral.

US Chronic Radiation Proctitis study highly recommends Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment.

The American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) has recently released a study which looks at the treatments available for people suffering from radiation proctitis which strongly ranked hyperbaric oxygen treatment as a real solution.

Radiation is often successfully used in many types of cancer including anal, cervical, prostate and rectal. Despite the benefits, and often successful removal of tumours, collateral damage can occur to the gastrointestinal tract and the patient can be left suffering from chronic radiation proctitis. Despite advancements in technology which allow for more targeted radiation treatment, it is expected that post radiation injury is still likely to occur in some patients.

The study looked at several medical treatments available and hyperbaric oxygen treatment was one of the strongly recommended treatments based on having a moderate level of evidence. The breakdown of treatments, recommendations and level of supporting evidence is detailed below.

TYPE OF TREATMENT GRADE OF RECCOMMENDATION BASE ON
Formalin application is an effective treatment for bleeding in patients with CRP Strong recommendation moderate-quality evidence
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is an effective treatment modality to reduce bleeding in patients with CRP Strong recommendation moderate-quality evidence
Short chain fatty acid enemas are not effective in preventing or treating chronic hemorrhagic radiation proctitis and are not recommended Weak recommendation moderate-quality evidence
Sucralfate retention enemas are a moderately effective treatment for rectal bleeding resulting from CRP Strong recommendation low-quality evidence
Alternative treatments such as mesalamine, ozone therapy, and metronidazole have not been adequately evaluated in treating radiation proctitis and are not recommended Strong recommendation low-quality evidence
Endoscopic argon beam plasma coagulation is a safe and effective treatment for rectal bleeding induced by CRP Strong recommendation moderate-quality evidence
Endoscopic bipolar electrocoagulation, radiofrequency ablation, Nd-YAG laser, and cryotherapy are alternative treatments of rectal bleeding from CRP that have been insufficiently evaluated and are thus not recommended Strong recommendation low-quality evidence

Wesley Hyperbaric has had proven results for people suffering from radiation proctitis and other radiation injuries. If you would like to find out more about what we do and how we can help, then please contact us.

Doctor’s Education Evening 2018 – Book your seat today!

Our annual RAGCP Doctor’s Education Evening is now open for registrations. Any health professional who has an interest in Hyperbaric Medicine are encouraged to come along to find out how it works and what it can do for patients. Even better, those attending will be eligible to receive CPD points.

The course will be once again facilitated by Wesley Hyperbaric Medical Director Dr. Graeme Kay. You will learn all about the approved medical conditions that are treated at Wesley Hyperbaric as well as having the opportunity to tour the facility and see the chamber up close. There will be informative case studies from recent successful outcomes enabling you to make informed and educated decisions around referring your patients to us for treatment.

Facilitator Dr Graeme Kay

Dr Graeme Kay has been the Medical Director of Wesley Hyperbaric since 2015, serving as the Deputy Director from 2013-2015. Prior to starting at Wesley Hyperbaric he has had a varied medical career wearing many different hats; GP, hyperbaric medicine registrar at The Townsville Hospital, anaesthetic PHO and full-time rural relief doctor serving locations as varied as Hughenden, Ingham, Palm Island and Magnetic Island. He has a very keen interest in medical training and doctor’s welfare since serving as RMO president as a junior doctor in Rockhampton.

He has been a SCUBA diver from the age of 15, started his training in diving medicine in 2003, and holds the qualification of Diploma of Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine awarded by the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society.

When not working or diving, Graeme can be found enjoying the life of a stay at home dad with his wife and daughters.

The event will take place on Tuesday 27 November and will run for around 2 hours from 6.00pm. The chamber facility is located within the Samford Jackson Building at the Wesley Hospital.

Places are limited so you should register today to ensure you can make this fun and informative event. Please call us on 07 3371 6033 or fill out the below form.

Doctor Education Evening Registration

Please complete to book your place.

Changes to our billing

As from 1st November 2018 we will be increasing our fees and changing the way we bill your consultation and wound care accounts.

As a private specialist practice, we provide outstanding, advanced wound care to our outpatients and hyperbaric patients and, as such, we will no longer bulk bill our fees, we will be adopting the AMA doctor rates. Please see the table of fees below.

To make the Medicare claiming process easier for our patients we have installed an Integrated Medicare two way claim system through our medical software program.

We will receipt your services and your rebate will be paid to your account, usually overnight.  You should be aware that the cost of treatment will be in excess of the amount Medicare will reimburse.

If you have any questions or would like more information about this please contact us to talk to one of our reception staff.

CONSULTATION DETAILS AMA FEE Out of Pocket
Wound Treatment (consumables) + doctor / specialist fee as outlined below.
You will pay for all your consumables used for treatment of your wound
Charged Out of Pocket Charged Out of Pocket
Level B Consultation GP (less than 20 minutes)

Level B Consultation Specialist (5 – 25 mins)

$79.95

$63.35

$42.35

$42.35

Level C Consultation GP (at least 20 minutes)

Level C Consultation Specialist (25 – 45mins)

$149.00

$114.20

$76.20

$76.20

Level D Consultation GP (at least 40 minutes)

Level D Consultation Specialist (more than 45 minutes)

$220.00

$172.85

$112.85

$112.85

Consultant Physician $330.00 $215.10

 

A brand new look

To help celebrate 20 years in business the hyperbaric chamber, located in the Wesley Hospital, has recently undergone a major rebrand.

We are now called Wesley Hyperbaric – a much shorter and friendlier name than the previously titled “The Wesley Centre for Hyperbaric Medicine”. One thing we have decided to keep however is our link to the Wesley Hospital. We remain proud to be part of this great hospital and hope that we can continue to offer a fantastic service to both the Wesley Hospital and the entire region.

Some of the treatments that we have helped out with over the past 20 years include non-healing wounds such as diabetic wounds, venous leg ulcers and the treatment of non-healing flaps after surgery. We also treat soft tissue injuries and ORN after patients have undergone radiation therapy.

Outside of the hyperbaric chamber, one of our key offerings to the Wesley Hospital has been our Advanced Wound Clinic. Our expertise and access to the best and most advanced wound care products has seen huge successes in treatment of wounds in patients. We have recently expanded and have now doubled the capacity to treat problematic wounds – meaning we can treat more patients and offer the excellent and friendly service we are known for.

Our team of dedicated staff are always on hand to answer any questions you may have about our services and if you are a health professional looking for more information we are very happy to come out to your place of business to give a presentation.

We look forward to many more years helping people across the region.