What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT), a treatment that utilizes oxygen under pressure, is entering a particularly exciting phase of expanded awareness within the medical community. HBOT is routinely used in hospitals in the U.S. for a small range of conditions. Internationally, it is utilized much more extensively, treating up to 100 conditions. Extensive, on-going research in recent years has yielded even further, compelling evidence of the beneficial impacts of HBOT, especially for neurological conditions.
The Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research, one of the largest facilities of its kind in the world, in association with the Sackler School of Medicine in Tel Aviv, have produced particularly well-designed HBOT studies involving Post-Stroke Recovery, Post-Concussion Syndrome, and the aging brain. These studies reveal extremely promising findings. The sum effects of HBOT have been shown to induce neuroplasticity and restore impaired brain functioning.
Neuroplasticity essentially describes the brain’s normal and on-going ability to restructure and reorganize or “rewire” itself according to adaptive needs, challenges, and stimulation. Certain injuries, diseases, and aging, however, can disrupt this process. The Sagol Center studies specifically focused on Post-Stroke Recovery and Post-Concussion Syndrome participants and found that HBOT could induce significant neuroplasticity in damaged areas of the brain and restore impaired cognitive and motor functioning – even when started years after the stroke or concussion had occurred.
It should be noted that HBOT will not have an impact upon necrotic (“dead”) brain tissue. However, even chronically damaged or “stunned” tissue, which typically surrounds a necrotic area, can still be revitalized and the associated brain functioning restored. This restoration can potentially make all the difference in improving the quality of life for many individuals.
It should be further noted that the Sagol Center recommends a multi-disciplinary approach where HBOT, while an extremely potent stand-alone treatment, is part of an integrated approach for neurological conditions which includes, among other things, regular neurocognitive testing, counseling, proper diet, and physical therapy to bring about optimal results.
HBOT and PRO Medical
Dr. Mark Dedomenico, founder and owner of PRO Club/Medical, has been using HBOT in his studies of stem cells for the last 16 years. This combination of stem cell therapy with HBOT optimizes outcomes – where wound healing, stimulation for growth of collagen, elastin, and angiogenesis (the creation of new blood vessels), and tissue revitalization – are all enhanced. We envision, at some point on the horizon, offering this combination at PRO Medical for neurological and orthopedic conditions.
We invite you to reach out to our PRO Medical Hyperbaric Department to learn more details of how HBOT can be successfully integrated into a plan of care for Post-Stroke Recovery, Post-Concussion Syndrome, and other neurological conditions. We’re happy to provide literature in the way of research studies to further aid in making an informed decision. And, lastly, we are both excited and honored to be offering a treatment of such uniquely, strong therapeutic effectiveness and versatility as part of our ever-evolving PRO Medical Center.
By Collin Hicks, Hyperbarics Safety Director at PRO Medical