To function properly, the body needs the right amount of oxygen, according to Mayo Clinic. When tissue is injured, however, it needs even more oxygen to thrive. With hyperbaric oxygen therapy, those living with infection undergo treatment to increase the amount of oxygen the blood can carry throughout the body. This treatment provides temporary restoration of blood oxygen, which can fight infection and increase chances of healing.
Let’s take a closer look at what hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used for, benefits of the treatments and a run-through of the therapy process:
What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy and what does it do?
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy increases the atmospheric pressure in the body to fill it with 100 percent oxygen. Its purpose is to enhance the body’s overall healing process. Under normal pressure, the body transports oxygen by red blood cells. With HBOT, the amount of oxygen that is carried in all fluids of the body increases.
What conditions are treated by hyperbaric oxygen therapy?
Someone living with the following conditions may be suggested to consider HBOT:
- Severe anemia.
- Brain abscess.
- Arterial gas embolism.
- Decompression sickness.
- Carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Sudden deafness.
- Infectious skin or bone that leads to death of tissue.
- Non-healing wounds.
- Radiation injury.
- Sudden vision loss.
- Skin grafts.
Recently, doctors were able to reverse the trauma in a toddler who nearly drowned in February 2016 using hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The increased oxygen supply repaired her damaged tissue, reduced swelling and encouraged the brain cells to thrive.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy in Alzheimer’s Treatment
By increasing the amount of oxygen in one’s system, we’ve found that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can provide the following benefits:
- Reverse damage caused by heart attack or stroke.
- Increase the ability of white blood cells to destroy bacteria.
- Stimulate growth of cells that can aid wound healing.
Families who have a loved one with Alzheimer’s understand how debilitating the disease can be. This type of dementia only doesn’t only pose a threat to memory and cognition, it can also cause mood and personality changes, poor judgment and increased anxiety and aggression, according to the National Institute on Aging.
But what if there was a solution to dealing with these symptoms, making it easier for those living with the condition to cope? Recent research conducted by Tel Aviv University stated that hyperbaric oxygen therapy may be the answer.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used to provide patients with pure oxygen in a closed, pressurized room. It is said that under these conditions, oxygen in the blood increases and transfers seamlessly to the blood vessels to stimulate and promote healing. To test whether this type of treatment could aid Alzheimer’s patients, researchers at Tel Aviv University built a custom hyperbaric oxygen therapy chamber for mice.
“The mice reduced plaque pathology by 40 percent.”
During a 14-day experiment, the mice went through a series of behavioral and tissue biochemical tests after undergoing administered hyperbaric oxygen therapy for an hour each day. By the two-week mark, the researchers found that the mice had reduced plaque pathology by 40 percent and also reduced neuroinflammation by 40 percent as compared to the control mice.
“In this hallmark study, the beneficial physiological effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy were directly demonstrated on Alzheimer-affected brain tissue,” stated Shai Efrati, professor and study conductor.
For human beings to find the same positive reaction in hyperbaric oxygen therapy, Efrati stated that patients must undergo treatment early on in their Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
“We assume that the main challenge in human use will be to initiate the treatment at early stages before a significant amount of brain tissue is lost.”
HBOT Uses in Autism Treatment
Caring for a child with autism can be an incredibly challenging task. Perhaps one of the greatest frustrations of any parent dealing with this condition is that, as of yet, there is still no actual cure. Instead, the treatment for autism typically involves a combination of medication and communication therapy. Some parents have also testified that using hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT) for autism has had a positive impact on their children’s symptoms.
Through HBOT, patients are exposed to 100 percent pure oxygen in a special pressurized chamber. This makes it easier for the gaseous element to dissolve into the body’s cells, which are mostly liquid. Taking in a higher concentration of oxygen can help heal certain cells, and also reduce inflammation – making it a beneficial treatment option for a whole range of health conditions.
Because of its many applications, former Dallas Cowboy Ryan Neufeld decided to test it on two very different medical conditions: his post-concussion syndrome and his son’s autism.
According to CW33 News Dallas/Fort Worth, Neufeld, a former tight end who saw more than his fair share of collisions – can still feel the effects of his NFL career, even three years after retiring from the game.
“Headaches, short-term memory issues and some irritability,” are a few symptoms he deals with on a regular basis, the media outlet states.
In addition to helping ease some of these after-effects of his physically trying profession, Neufeld reportedly hopes that the healing abilities of oxygen chamber therapy may be beneficial for his son, who struggles with communicative limitations and behavioral issues as a result of his autism.
What does treatment consist of?
Prior to treatment, patients will need to notify technicians of any medication or non-prescription drugs they’re taking. Additionally, patients are encouraged to give up smoking any tobacco products to ensure the body can transport oxygen as efficiently as possible.
At the Longevity Centres of Houston, patients enter our Vitaeris 320, which is the largest machine in the Oxyhealth’s Hyperbaric Chamber fleet. It’s 32″ inflated diameter is roomy enough to seat two people at a time, making it a comfortable experience – giving patients the option to move around and sit up during treatment. Inside the chamber, patients breathe in 100 percent oxygen for 60 minutes under increased atmospheric pressure. Because of the relaxed atmosphere, patients are encouraged to read or even take a nap during each session.
How the Longevity & Stem Cell Centre of Houston can help
Did you know that The Longevity & Stem Cell Centre of Houston is one of the first facilities in Houston to provide 100 percent hyperbaric oxygen therapy to patients outside of a hospital setting? Someone dealing with any of the conditions stated earlier may consider reaching out to our professionals for treatment.
If you’re interest in learning more about hyperbaric oxygen therapy, or any of the other services provided at the Longevity & Stem Centre, don’t hesitate to contact us today.