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Health Canada has taken some unlicensed soft-shelled hyperbaric chambers off the market due to serious health risks.
Last year, the health authority issued a notice advising against the use of the product, which is promoted online to treat a variety of medical conditions—including autism, cerebral palsy and migraines.
Since first warning Canadians about the risks of using unlicensed soft-shelled hyperbaric chambers, the department has removed more hyperbaric chambers from the marketplace and responded to more consumer complaints.
In early 2020, six unlicensed units were seized from distributors in Quebec, manufactured by Yada, Ocyhealth LLC and Oxynova.
In September, another three models of hyperbaric chambers were seized from Oxynova in Alberta.
“Soft-shelled hyperbaric chambers may expose patients, or those in close proximity, to serious injury, including death,” Health Canada said in a warning issued today. “Risks include fire, spreading transmissible diseases through cross-contamination between users, damage to the ears, eyes, sinuses, lungs and teeth, and changes to blood sugar levels.”
They added that the risk of fire is significantly increased when the device is used in combination with an oxygen concentration device.
Health Canada says it is illegal to advertise for sale, import for sale, or sell medical devices in Canada without appropriate licensing, under the Medical Devices Regulations.
While Health Canada has not licensed any soft-shelled hyperbaric chambers, oxygen therapy using hard-shelled hyperbaric chambers is a well-established medical treatment.
Health Canada has licensed four hard-shelled hyperbaric chamber manufacturers in Canada.