Dr. Necip Cem Kinaci was for long a specialist in nuclear medicine. But that all changed when is son Ata was diagnosed with autism, a neurodevelopmental medical condition almost two decades ago.
Since then Dr. Kinaci has been fighting the battle with autism along with his son and trying to find out new ways to defeat this health condition.
Dr. Kinaci recounted his experience during an interview with the Anadolu Agency on the World Autism Day celebrated on April 2 annually since 2007.
He recounted why he switched his profession from a nuclear medicine specialist to an autism expert after so many years.
Kinaci, who completed his medical studies from the Capa Medicine Faculty in Istanbul, was quoted saying that he gave up everything to focus on his autism studies to help his son Ata counter this neurodevelopmental condition.
When Did It All Began?
Kinaci recounted that Ata, who was born in 1999, began to show symptoms of autism at the tender age of three. When Ata was first admitted to the kindergarten, a resident psychologist at the facility informed Kinaci that his son could not hold eye contact with others.
Despite this warning, Kinaci rejected this thought as Ata made maintained good eye contact with his parents at home. However, the school psychologist insisted that Ata did not do the same with the others.
However, as time went by, the symptoms became less and less subtle leading to the diagnosis of autism in 2002. It was the same year that Ata started his treatment to battle with this neurological health condition.
Dr. Kinaci and his wide broke down when they were informed that there was no cure for autism to date. Regardless, the couple kept on searching for treatment techniques that would make their son’s life a little easier than before. This is how then came upon hyperbaric therapy.
What is Hyperbaric Therapy?
We all know that Red Blood Cells (RBC) carry oxygen and other nutrients to all the nooks and corners of our body including the organs and tissues.
Oxygen is one of the key components required to repair damaged tissues and keep them in good health. This oxygen is also delivered by the RBC.
Through hyperbaric oxygen therapy, our body gets double the amount of oxygen (in this case pure oxygen) than what we normally breathe in.
The increased amount of pure oxygen expedites our natural healing process and is used to heal damaged tissues in areas where blood flow is either restricted or impaired.
How is the Hyperbaric Therapy Performed?
Hyperbaric therapy can be performed in a monoplace hyperbaric chamber or a multi-place hyperbaric chamber. It is best to say that hyperbaric therapy cannot be performed without a hyperbaric chamber.
HBOT sessions start with the patient entering the chamber to lie down on the mattress inside it. As the name suggests monoplace chambers accommodate a singular person while multiplace chambers accommodate more than one patient.
Inside the chamber, the patient is exposed to a 100 percent pure oxygen environment to breathe in. The air pressure in the hyperbaric chamber is also higher than what we find at the sea level.
All the patient needs to do is to relax inside the chamber and breathe in the pure oxygen.
The enhanced air pressure helps the pure oxygen to get dissolved in all body fluids including the blood plasma.
This helps in the delivery of pure oxygen to the damaged tissues where the blood flow is restricted.
How did Hyperbaric Therapy Help Ata Fight with Autism?
After about 40 hyperbaric therapy sessions Ata started talking again and sometimes he even spoke fluently.
Ata, who is now 20 years old, has come a long way and his journey is considered a success story of hyperbaric therapy and its benefits for autism.
Kinaci states that it was after his son started undergoing HBOT sessions that he took an interest in computers and started spending time online. As a matter of fact, Ata now does his own cooking and cleaning without any assistance.