The XIVth International symposium of speleotherapy took place in Romania on October 4-6, 2012. The symposium was held under the aegis of The International Union of Speleology (UIS), The Romanian Academy of Medical Sciences and the Committees of The Permanent Commission of Speleotherapy (PCS) – Department of Research.
Specialists from high academic institutions and organizations from Romania, Russia, Czech Republic, Ukraine, Austria, Slovakia, Poland and other countries participated for three days at The XIVth International Symposium of Speleotherapy. Doctors and physicians with specialization in Pulmonology, Allergology, Dermatology, Rehabilitation, Physical Medicine and Balneotherapy, professors at medical academic institutions, clinical researchers and engineers, gathered together to share their experience and research studies about the effects of salt therapy in respiratory conditions and balneology using mineralized salty water.
They presented speleotherapy in salt mines and caves, from history to our modern times approaches – such as halotherapy or salt therapy, the quality of therapeutic factors such as microclimate, physical, chemical, microbiological and current achieved results, for used in health and balneotherapytourism.
There were also presented the experimental results in the laboratory on different pathologies and the clinical, biochemical, immunological and other effects on patients with various diseases. Indications and contraindications, together with different methods of salt therapy in prophylaxis, treatment and rehabilitation of patients with different pathologies were discussed.
The public gathered lots of information about the clinical and functional efficiency of speleotherapy and halotherapy in the treatment of bronchial asthma with different degrees of control, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic bronchitis, allergic rhinitis and other allergic pathologies, pneumonia and acute respiratory diseases.
The influence of living near roadways and today’s increased air pollution in respiratory diseases and the effects of removing these factors was another interesting study. “Traffic emission sources of organic chemicals represented by microparticles are associated with increased systemic inflammation.”, the study says. Long time exposure to salt therapy helps to strengthen the respiratory mucosa towards allergens and maintains proper hygiene over the whole respiratory system. Home salt therapy is also available for long term exposure in chronic respiratory diseases.
The anti inflammatory and healing effects of salt therapy – aerosol salt therapy and salty baths – on skin diseases such as psoriasis, eczema, neurodermatitis, chronic rashes, burns and wounds, was another interesting subject in the symposium.
Bronchial obstruction is known as a frequent symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and rock-salt aerosols is considered one of the most effective methods of treatment. The alkali properties of ionic salts also have positive effects on the irritated esophagus and gastric mucosa.
This symposium underlined the many uses of salt therapy in respiratory conditions, skin disorders and in balneotherapy.
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