Introducing Ian Oliver. . .

"Hello I am Renee Oliver, Ian Oliver's mother. My son Ian was born with a traumatic brain injury do to a vacuum extraction. He was born on May 9, 2003, weighing 8lbs and 21" long. His apgars were 3, 3, 6. He was resuscitated after delivery, and transported to Florida Hospital South in Orlando. There he spent 3 months in the NICU. He was sent home on August 3, 2003. At discharge he was on five different medications three of them being seizure meds. He also was sent home on oxygen, an apnea monitor, g-tube and sixteen hours of nursing care. His diagnoses was HIE (Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy), failure to thrive, uncontrollable non-convulsive epilepsy, developmental delays, and cerebral palsy. I had no idea what i was going to do with this very sick little baby. I was scared to death.

While Ian was in the hospital I stayed right across the street at the Ronald McDonald House, where I met so many other families going through the same thing I was. I was lucky enough to meet a mother of a little girl who also shared some of the same issues as Ian. She was so kind and told me a lot of great advice. One thing she told me was that I needed to take Ian to Central Florida Hyperbarics, to do hyperbarics. I was so impressed with the strides that her daughter had made I was determined to look into it.

I talked to my sons doctors and they claim to know nothing about hyperbarics and brain injuries, what they did say is that it would not hurt. So my decision was made and on November the 13 Ian and I made our first dive. When we started he was pretty close to a vegetable. He made little eye contact, did not track objects, he didn't make any noises, he didn't move either arms or legs and he had never showed any emotion. He also was having on average 6-7 seizures a day. I was worried that he would not like the chamber but he impressed me. He was great in the chamber he went to sleep before our time had started.

After about our fourth week was started to notice that he was having a decrease in seizure activity, he was only having 1-2 seizures a day. We also noticed that he was much more alert and aware of his surroundings. Ian smiled for the first time right before Christmas 2003. He also started to move his arms and his legs. I was never so happy in my life. By the new year he would give you five, smile when talked to and made eye contact all the time. The biggest accomplishment that I see was the decrease in seizure activity. He stopped seizing. He went without a seizure for two months after we stopped hyperbarics. It was truly a miracle. We finished our first set of 40 treatments the first week of January. I decided with all the improvement that we would give him a rest and return in a couple of months. We did return in March and did 20 more treatments.

As of today Ian is striving more and more. I have to say that have never been so proud in my life to say that he is my son. He has done amazing things. Things that I was told were impossible. I remember being told to just let nature take its course, because there was nothing left to fight for. They told me he would be a vegetable for the rest of his life; I was told that his quality of life would be nothing. But Ian has proved them all wrong. Currently he is eighteen months old. He is the coolest and CUTEST baby you could ever meet. We are working on sitting and playing with toys. Ian recently had an evaluation of his cognitive skills and he did great. At seventeen months he scored at a cognitive level of a fourteen month old that means he is only three months behind, (that's like nothing).

He can now roll over and push himself up. He has been trying to army crawl, I can't wait. He can say "Hi" and "dada". He babbles all day long. His favorite show is the wiggles, if they are on, he laughs the whole time. We are planning to go back to do Hyperbarics in January. He has had 60 treatments and I would like to do 40 more before summer of 2005."

Introducing Shane Hoover . . .

In March 2004, at the age of 27 months my son Shane was diagnosed as autistic. It came as a shock to me, I realized that he was developmentally delayed because he never developed speech, but all his other symptoms I thought were just part of his unique personality. After reading about autism I came to see that many of the things my son did were classic autistic symptoms. He walked on tip toes, spun in circles, flapped hands when excited, walked with his eyes closed, was mesmerized by the TV, and nobody could get his attention. I located a doctor that specialized in autism and immediately put him on a gluten and casein free diet. That seemed to help with the eye contact, but he still seemed unable to learn.

His doctor did tests for toxic metals, yeast and bacteria. Shane was diagnosed with high yeast, clostridia, and toxic metals. In particular, his lead level was very high. We then put him on many supplements, medicines, and a chelator called DMPS. Still after close to a year of this and a lot of therapy his progress was slow. Then a friend of mine told me about Hyperbaric Oxygen treatments and how much it has helped her daughter. My husband and I decided we wanted to try it for our son.

We start treatments in March 2005. My son’s progress has totally amazed me. Many of his sensory issues are now gone, he will sit in the bath tub, let me brush his teeth and hair, listens to music, and eats almost twice as much as before. Eating was always so hard for him before. Also his cognitive skills improved, he can put together simple puzzles, stack blocks, match pictures, and even spell his name with magnet letters. For the first time ever he is responding to things that I ask him to do and seems to enjoy learning new things. These are all significant changes that happened since starting HBOT. I feel that HBOT has helped Shane so much. He completed his 40th treatment at the end of May and I am looking forward to see what other progress Shane will make. I am sure we will be back for more in the future.


Introducing Dolan Gerald Robles . . .

Dolan Gerald Robles was born on December 7, 2003. Dolan was 4 lbs. 90z. The doctor overdosed me with blood pressure medication before I delivered and as result Dolan would pass out when he stopped crying. Dolan had to be airlifted to Shand’s Hospital in Gainsville, FL. When Dolan was four months old he started having small seizures which got progressively worse until he was having 7-8 a day. My little boy was constantly screaming and crying. We took Dolan to All Children’s to see a Pediatric Neurologist where they discovered that he had an abnormal fold on the left side of his brain and he was diagnosed with Schiszencephaly (an ‘open lip’ in the brain). I heard about Hyperbaric Oxygen from a friend whose daughter had problems similar to Dolan’s. At 20 months Dolan began HBOT for the first time.

Prior to HBOT Dolan could not crawl, roll over or even hold up his head. Within the first two weeks his head control improved 100% and Dolan started standing while he was being held and soon began wanting it all the time. We have completed 40 treatments and Dolan is more alert, talkative, rolling over and even walking if you hold him. His seizures have gone from 7-8 daily to 1-2. We finished our last treatment on October 28th. I am getting married January 28th and after that we’ll be back for another round!

Angela Suggs (Dolan’s Mom)

Introducing Corey Sharrow . . .

My name is Corey Sharrow and I was involved in a near fatal motorcycle accident in November of 2005 where I suffered an epidural hematoma and was given a 25% chance to live thru brain surgery.  I was told I would NEVER be able to feed, dress, groom or bathe myself ever again nor would I be able to walk and I would need 24/7 care the rest of my life.  I learned about HBOT from my wound care doctor, Michael Cascio, back in 2008.  He informed me that it has healing effects on the brain as well as healing effects on several other health issues like stroke, M.S., Cerebral Palsy to list a few.

I did my research on the internet and learned quite a bit about the benefits of HBOT. Of course, I was a little skeptical at first, so I asked my doctor, David Nerness, what his thoughts were and he spoke highly of the treatment.

After 20 treatments in September of 2008, I had made noticeable and significant improvements in upper body strength, mobility, and speech.  Having had no physical, occupational, or speech therapy for approximately 6 months before my HBOT, I was amazed and no longer a skeptic!

Prior to the treatment, I was not able to maintain my balance very easily and now I am able to walk with the aid of a walker or railing of sorts.  Another benefit I gained from my HBOT was an increase in my Oxygen levels.  During my sleep I went from 52% oxygen/blood levels to 94%!   I have also noticed an increase in my lung capacity, which has greatly improved my speech.  Prior to the treatment, I had very labored breathing and now I can carry on conversations with minimal breath support issues.

I can definitely say that it’s a shame that health insurance companies will not cover the treatments.  There are lot of people with traumatic brain injuries (T.B.I.) and other “non-covered alternative treatments” that will not have the chance at this beneficial treatment.

Just because your insurance will not cover it don’t let that stop you.  I highly suggest if you are reading this and have a treatable health condition, consult with Dr. Rhodes.  If she thinks it will help you, pursue it!  I am no longer a skeptic, I am a firm believer!

I have also come to the conclusion that if your insurance will not cover it, it is probably something that actually works. I am able to do all of the things they said I would NEVER do as well as drive a vehicle and I do not require a care giver like I was told either.