On October 23-25 2014, The XVth International Symposium of Speleotherapy was held in Wieliczka, Poland. The Symposium was dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the official opening of the first underground Allergological Sanatorium “Kinga” in Wieliczka, Poland.
The event was organized under the aegis of Board of the “Wieliczka” Salt Mine, International Union of Speleology (UIS) and Polish Association of Balneology and Physical Medicine.
I was invited to participate in Symposium by the President of Permanent Commission on Speleotherapy (PCS) / Commission permanente de spéléothérapie (CPS) Dr., Ph.D. Iuri Simionca (Romania) and by the Chairman of the Board of the “Wieliczka” Salt Mine Tourist Route Ltd. – MSc. Eng. Marian Leśny.
All activities of the Symposium were held 130 meters below surface Wieliczka salt mine. Professionals from numerous countries took part in the Symposium: Poland, Ukraine, Romania, Hungary, the UK, Czech Republic, Russia, Moldova, and the United States.
One of the Symposium’s sponsors was Halomed (Vilnius, Lithuania), producer of state-of-the-art equipment for Controlled Halotherapy.
Moderator of the session of Symposium’s 1st day was the President of Polish Association of Balneology and Physical Medicine, Consultant to the Minister of Health on Health Resort Medicine (Poland) Professor Irena Ponikowska. She gave a lecture “Current status, progress and forecasts for development of Polish health resort medicine”. A main trend was noted: 10% growth in medical tourism in 2013 in Poland. Medical tourism is expected to increase.
Mr. Jacub Czerwinski, Director of the “Wieliczka” Salt Mine Health Resort gave a very informative presentation. He noted that the market demand of Speleotherapy is growing, and this fact is certainly connected with the increasing number of cases of respiratory diseases. In particular, over the past year, the number of visitors of Salt Mine “Wieliczka” was increased by 30%. The most of commercial patients of the Health Resort come from the Eastern European countries (Russia, Ukraine). Main reason is their familiarity with subterranean salt therapy method.
In recent years, a growing interest is noted in salt therapy in artificial salt caves above ground – Halotherapy. This is due, on the one hand, with the exclusivity of speleotherapy, on the other hand – with more studying and understanding of mechanisms of action of dry fine aerosol of sodium chloride – the main acting factor of Speleo- and Halotherapy.
I was one of the moderators of a session on Halotherapy and delivered a presentation “Mechanisms of action and possible therapeutic application of Controlled Halotherapy”.
Presentation has been told about the mechanisms of action, efficacy, experience of application of Halotherapy in Russia, Lithuania, Poland and other countries.
In 1991, for the first time in medical science, the concept of Controlled Halotherapy was put forward. To ensure a differentiated approach to the patients, it was considered reasonable to dose salt aerosol and to control aerosol concentrations.
Controlled HT means the treatment in controlled respiratory environment of dry aerosol of sodium chloride, ensuring a differentiated dosing and control over aerosol concentration level within the whole course of treatment procedure.
Innovative technology – Controlled Halotherapy uses in advanced high-quality spa culture countries – Austria, Germany, Poland, Croatia, Great Britain, Italy, Australia, United States and others.
Within the symposium, Gala Dinner was given underground in Komora Jana Haluszki. Certainly, an unusual and unforgettable atmosphere promoted the exchange of experiences and companionship.