updated 5/2/2009 12:02:39 PM ET 2009-05-02T16:02:39

An Italian woman has died and her 4-year-old grandson is in critical condition after a hyberbaric chamber exploded at a South Florida clinic.

The Broward Sheriff's Office says 62-year-old Vincenza Pesce died early Saturday, a day after a blast caused a flash fire inside the chamber.

She was holding her grandson, Franchesco Martinizi, during the blast. He was being treated for a medical condition but authorities didn't immediately say what was wrong with him.

Sheriff's spokesman Mike Jachles says Pesce was holding the boy to comfort him.

Hyperbaric chambers are filled with 100 percent oxygen and can be used to treat diving injuries and other wounds.

Authorities are investigating the cause of the blast.

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