What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy and How does it Work?

What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy and How does it Work?

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Extreme illness or injury may require intensive care that cannot be replicated at home. One such example is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. This procedure is only done in situations where it is absolutely necessary, especially when there is an insufficient supply of oxygen to stimulate a healing environment. The procedure requires specialized equipment. But exactly what is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?

The Basics
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is a specialized healing procedure which uses a highly pressurized chamber and 100% oxygen to treat a variety of wounds, infections, and illnesses.

Some Wounds and Illnesses Which Benefit from HBOT Include:

*Gangrene and other necrotizing soft tissue infections
*Traumatic and/or crush wounds
*Burns
*Skin grafts or flaps
*Radiation-induced wounds that won’t heal under normal circumstances
*Decompression sickness from diving
*Diabetes-related wounds – which reduces the risk of need for amputation

The patient breathes 100% oxygen while resting in a pressurized treatment chamber. The pressure inside the chamber is gradually increased so that it is three times higher than the natural atmosphere.

HBOT works due to two principles: hyper oxygenation and the decrease in bubble size. The patient is administered 100% pure oxygen. When the “bubble”, or atmosphere pressure, is increased, the patient’s lungs are able to gather more oxygen than normal. Wounds and illnesses need oxygen to heal. Since the patient is breathing pure oxygen, the effect is dramatically amplified.

The blood carries oxygen throughout the body, and the oxygen that the blood cells are carrying is pure, so the immune system has a strong base with which to fight off infection. The pure oxygen stimulates and promotes healing.

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