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“The study has gained ethical approval and will focus on 20 volunteers from inpatients at Castle Craig, one of the UK’s largest addiction centres, where an 18-seater hyperbaric chamber has been built, costing £250,000.
Participants will have a total of 20 sessions of two hours of hyperbaric oxygen, with blood samples taken from them during the course of treatment.
Koen Terra, 37, a patient at Castle Craig since October, said yesterday he had already had about 20 sessions in the hyperbaric chamber and was pleased to take part in the experiment.
“In the beginning, in the chamber, you get a rest in your whole body,” he said. Mr Terra, 37, a chef from Amsterdam who has battled alcohol problems for 20 years, said he had a longstanding wound on his leg which had refused to heal. After sessions in the chamber, it was now getting better.
“It seems to be promoting healing in your whole body,” he said. He said that during the sessions in the chamber, he wore a mask and would read a book or watch TV. “It is just like being in a pressurised airplane.”
Peter Hayes, Professor of Hepatology at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary who is leading the trial, said: “Most ways of increasing stem cells are very complicated. The beauty of this approach is its simplicity. We have to do the study first before getting carried away.”
Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte
Kawr Fakkan, United Arab Emirates, Kawr Fakkan, UAE
Wagga Wagga, Australia
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