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Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Some wounds will not respond to general wound care treatments alone. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO) is an effective technology that can supplement the other treatment methods used by physicians. HBO therapy provides 100% pure oxygen in a pressurized chamber. This hyperbaric, or high pressure, dose of oxygen offers distinct therapeutic benefits and can be used to treat a variety of illnesses. It may be the primary treatment for some disorders, but it’s often combined with other treatments. HBO therapy involves daily visits to the Comprehensive Wound Healing Center on average of 20-30 treatments, then follow-up wound care to monitor the healing progress.

During HBO therapy, you will enter a pressurized chamber and breathe 100% pure oxygen. This increases the amount of oxygen in your blood, which is then carried to the wound and surrounding tissue to promote healing and the growth of new tissue. Before you begin HBO therapy, you will be thoroughly educated about it. Your referring physician will be informed of your progress with regular reports and photos of the wounds. When your therapy is complete, your care will be returned to your physician for long-term follow-up and monitoring.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy greatly increases the amount of oxygen delivered to body tissues by your blood. It is important to note that the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy result from an oxygen-enriched bloodstream and not from the oxygen’s direct contact with wounds. This is why wound dressings are usually left in place during treatment. The attending doctor will discuss the specific reason for a referral to hyperbaric oxygen therapy, but generally this treatment provides one or more of the following effects:

  • Enhanced wound healing
  • Increased oxygen delivery to injured tissue
  • Improved infection control
  • New blood vessel formation
  • Preservation of damaged tissues
  • Elimination and reduced effects of toxic substances
  • Reduction or elimination of gas-bubble obstructions

When you come to the Comprehensive Wound Healing Center, we will make every effort to help you feel as comfortable as possible during your treatment. If you receive HBO therapy, your treatments will occur while you lie comfortably in the chamber. You will feel the same as you would resting in your own bed. You can listen to music, watch TV, or nap throughout the therapy. Though your legs are extended, your upper body may be positioned in the upright position if you wish.

During certain parts of the treatment, you may experience a sensation of fullness in the ears – similar to when you are flying in an airplane or driving down a mountain – as your eardrums respond to pressure changes. Before we start the therapy, we will show you several easy ways to avoid ear discomfort.

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