Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
In hyperbaric oxygen therapy, a patient breathes almost pure oxygen in a pressurized room or tube. By bringing more oxygen into the bloodstream, the treatment is thought to enhance healing for people with a number of conditions.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used to treat several medical conditions. And medical institutions use it in different ways. Your doctor may suggest hyperbaric oxygen therapy if you have one of the following conditions:
Bubbles of air in your blood vessels (arterial gas embolism)
Carbon monoxide poisoning
Infection of skin or bone that causes tissue death
Nonhealing wounds, such as a diabetic foot ulcer
Skin graft or skin flap at risk of tissue death
Vision loss, sudden and painless
The evidence is insufficient to support claims that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can effectively treat the following conditions:
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Spinal cord injury
How does it work?
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is a medical treatment which enhances the body's natural healing process by inhalation of 100% oxygen in a total body chamber, where atmospheric pressure is increased and controlled. It is used for a wide variety of treatments usually as a part of an overall medical care plan.
Under normal circumstances, oxygen is transported throughout the body only by red blood cells. With HBOT, oxygen is dissolved into all of the body's fluids, the plasma, the central nervous system fluids, the lymph, and the bone and can be carried to areas where circulation is diminished or blocked. In this way, extra oxygen can reach all of the damaged tissues and the body can support its own healing process. The increased oxygen greatly enhances the ability of white blood cells to kill bacteria, reduces swelling and allows new blood vessels to grow more rapidly into the affected areas. It is a simple, non-invasive and painless treatment.