The Science Behind Hyperbaric Therapy
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is the medical use of oxygen in a pressurized environment, at a level higher than 1 atmosphere absolute (ATA). Increased pressure allows for oxygen to dissolve and saturate the blood plasma (independent of hemoglobin/red blood cells), which yields a broad variety of positive physiological, biochemical and cellular effects. This noninvasive therapy is the most trusted way to increase oxygen levels to all organs of the body. The typical treatment lasts for 60-90 minutes, during which the patient lies down and breathes normally. Hyperoxia is excess oxygen or higher than normal levels of partial pressure of oxygen.
HBOT has been demonstrated in several clinical studies to enhance the body’s innate ability to repair and regenerate. It is used as an adjunct therapy to complement and enhance the healing process in both chronic and acute conditions. FDA Approved.
Non-hypoxemic vasoconstriction: The increase in O2 available in small arteries and capillaries favors vasoconstriction that occurs in healthy tissues and without deterioration of oxygenation. This promotes a redistribution of blood flow to hypoperfused areas.
Angiogenesis: Hyperoxia stimulates and favors the formation of small blood vessels, thus improving blood circulation.
Regulation of oxidative stress and the inflammatory response: Hyperoxia acts on regulators and mediators of the inflammatory response and reduces oxidative stress. This results in an anti-inflammatory effect and decreases cell damage.
Stem cell stimulation Hyperoxia stimulates the differentiation and release of stem cells. Thus, it contributes to the tissue repair process and the formation of new blood vessels.
Stimulation of cellular immunity The presence of O2 favors and stimulates polymorphonuclear cells (a type of white blood cell) that uses free radicals as a bactericidal mechanism.
Bactericidal Activity Hyperoxia generates reactive oxygen species that increase the activity of antibiotics. In addition, it is active against bacterial biofilm.
Osteogenesis Hyperoxia stimulates the differentiation of bone-forming cells, favors osteogenesis and bone repair.