Salt of the Earth. An English photographer on Solotvino (photos)
English photographer Kirill Kuletski visited the salt mines in the Transcarpathian village of Solotvino, where for 40 years there was an underground sanatorium for asthmatics.
Salt mines in Solotvino were discovered in the XVIII century, in the 1970s, Ukrainian Allergic Hospital was opened there.
In addition to mines, in Solotvino, there are also karst salt lakes, the salt content of which is higher than that of the Dead Sea.
The elternative therapy, which is used in Solotvino for asthma and other respiratory diseases, is known as speleotherapy.
Speleotherapy was opened in Poland in the 1950s, when doctors noticed that miners in the salt mines rarely suffered from tuberculosis.
The air of salt mines "impregnated" with salt helps to remove phlegm from the lungs and kills the germs that cause respiratory tract infections.
The air of salt tunnels contains ten times less microorganisms than the air of a conventional operating room.
In addition to respiratory diseases, salt-saturated air helps fight various skin diseases and the effects of burn disease.
The clinic in the village of Solotvino was located in the tunnels at a depth of 300 meters under the ground. The temperature here is maintained at the same level of 22 ° C throughout the year.
Solotvino hospital was the world's largest institution using speleotherapy as the primary method of treatment and rehabilitation after diseases of the respiratory system.
Every year, 300 to 500 people were treated in Solotvino salt mines - to get to the clinic, one often had to be included to a waiting list.
The usual period of stay in the hospital was 24 days.
During the therapeutic sessions, patients would lay on beds placed in niches cut into the rock and lit by fluorescent lamps. They were allowed to talk to each other or read.
In addition to medical offices, there was a lounge and a library in the underground facility.
Extraction of salt in Solotvino was discontinued in the early 2000s because of a rapid rise in groundwater. The speleotherapy ward was closed in 2008 after a rush of water into a ventilation shaft.
22 October 2016 22:44
18 October 2016 22:19