Navigation Links
Patients Find Healthy Vein in Old Austrian Mine

High in the Austrian Alps, patients wait in bathrobes and sandals to take a small train deep inside a disused mine to breathe in a natural radioactive gas, hoping it will help what ails them.

After a bumpy 20-minute ride, they arrive in one of four stations at the "Heilstollen," or "health mine," in the heart of Radhausberg mountain south of Salzburg -- a brief trip to the "tropics" while never leaving Europe.

Once there, they undress, lie down on camping beds and take a cure that has drawn millions of people worldwide to the unexpected heat, humidity and special atmosphere two kilometers (just over a mile) inside this Alpine peak.

Bad Gastein used to be a gold mine, and produced more than 800 kilos (1,760 pounds) of the precious metal each year during its 16th-century heyday. These days it attracts those hunting for a different type of good fortune, some longed-for relief from rheumatism, arthritis, asthma and skin conditions.

"The secret of its medical success comes from the ideal combination of three factors -- a constant temperature between 37 and 41 degrees C (99 to 106 degrees F), near 100 percent humidity, and a high natural level of radon gas," said Franz Zaver Rieser, a manager at the medical centre based at the opening of the mine.

"We receive 10,000 patients a year, and over 55 years in operation about three million patients have passed through the various mine areas," he said.

The beneficial properties were discovered around 1946, when miners searching unsuccessfully for the last traces of gold noticed their rheumatism, skin problems and respiratory difficulties had temporarily disappeared or were considerably improved after spending time underground.

Following a series of scientific studies on its effects, the mine was reopened in 1952 as what the organisers say is the world's only "health mine."

Gernot Strauss, part of the medical team at th e centre, stressed that the mine treatment cannot cure ailments, only alleviate their symptoms. But he said the effect can last up to nine months.

"There is as yet no cure for rheumatism," said Rieser, but "more than 90 percent of patients feel better after treatment."

The vital component, he explained, is a stimulating effect of radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas element that in high concentrations and long exposures is said to carry serious health risks.

At Bad Gastein, low doses of this colourless and odorless gas have been found to boost the ability of human cells to repair themselves.

The World Health Organisation issues regular warnings that high exposure to radon can increase the risk of lung cancer. It has been a major headache for some home and office owners in radon-prone areas, notably parts of the United States where the US Environmental Protection Agency website says it is "the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers ... (and) the second leading cause of lung cancer in America and claims about 20,000 lives annually."

But Bad Gastein organisers say patients are given one day without inhaling radon in between two days of treatment, and say the gas is out of the patients' bodies within three hours.

"The 50-odd mine staff are subject to 20 times more exposure than patients, but we remain below official exposure levels," said Rieser.

Depending on the gravity of the illness, doctors recommend up to 12 trips of one hour each to the mine over a four-week period, a course which could cost up to 600 euros (800 dollars).

Patients come from all over for the treatment, Rieser added, remembering "one 81-year-old woman who came all the way from Australia."


'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. One in Three Heart Attack Patients Have No Chest Pains
2. Amphetamines Help Recovery of Stroke Patients
3. Painkillers Do Not Shorten Dying Patients Lives
4. Patients With Filariasis More Prone To HIV Infection
5. Glivec - New Hope For CMC Patients
6. Patients often assume wrongly that they are allergic to penicillin
7. New FDA Approved Drug NATRECOR For Heart Failure Patients
8. Hemochromatosis Patients Blood is Safe
9. Patients Pressure Would Result In Overprescription
10. Risk Of Decongestants In Hypertensive Patients
11. Interference helps Heart Patients
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer at The ... uncovers what he says are the real facts surrounding all those Bible stories. For ... and Sunday school teachers, and Yisrayl says there is more to these than just ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... , ... Planet Future is a Final Cut Pro X themed ... showcasing pictures, videos as well as text in an exciting cartoon environment. Planet Future ... a beautiful frame overlay. Pixel Film Studios makes editing easy; simply insert media into ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... Dignity Health ... General Hospital Emergency Room –Mesa. The new facility is licensed under Dignity ... , “Dr. Bingham is an excellent leader and will ensure our new freestanding emergency ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... ... “ HEALING MIND : Five Steps to Ultimate Healing, Four Rooms ... teaches readers how to become their own therapist. Providing a useful step-by-step process for ... offers an understanding of how to heal one’s inner child using four archetypes of ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... use the action analytics leader’s population health solutions, MDinsight® and IndiGO®, for its ... the Atlanta-area healthcare system. Details of the contract were not disclosed. , As ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/12/2016)... PLATTSBURGH, NY , Feb. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Demers Ambulances ... Florida to Okaloosa County ... 164 Type III ambulances and one LT2 van. Quality Emergency ... Demers dealer, is responsible for the sale.  This is the ... Benoit LaFortune , Executive Vice President at Demers. --> ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... 2016  Memorial Hermann Health System has teamed up ... to bring a one-of-a-kind experience to pediatric patients at ... such as 360-degree video and Google Cardboard, Howard was ... – giving the patients and their families an unexpected, ... caught on video . Memorial Hermann ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... 12, 2016  Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: ARLZ ... Company will ring the Nasdaq Closing Bell at the ... at 4:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, February ... Adrian Adams , will perform the honorary ... 4:00 p.m. ET.  A live webcast will be available ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: