Neurological disorders affect about 1 billion people worldwide, with an estimated 6.8 million deaths that occur every year. It can affect any age group and knows no socio-economic boundaries. These are stunning numbers and the reasons behind the avalanche of neurological disorders are the topic of a whole other paper in itself. Suffice it to say that environmental and dietary pollutants and toxins have overwhelmed our biological systems resulting in a deluge of neurological impairments and disorders. Luckily, there is hope with hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Studies have shown how hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) has helped individuals regain neurological activity and functionality. Through an increased oxygen level applied under pressure, as in HBOT, the brain is able to help recover and repair the brain tissue, create and multiply new brain cells and improve cognitive functioning.
A recent study published in 2013 titled Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Can Improve Post Concussion Syndrome Years after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury – Randomized Prospective Trial ¹ that concluded that “HBOT can induce neuroplasticity leading to repair of chronically impaired brain functions and improved quality of life in mTBI (mild traumatic brain injury) patients with prolonged PCS (post concussion syndrome) at late chronic stage.” The same principle applies to those with neurological disorders, alzheimer’s, MS, Parkinson’s, and dementia.
The chart below clearly shows the cognitive improvements in the HBOT treated group in the study.
A Parkinson’s disease study, Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment on a Parkinson’s Disease Patient: A Case Study², was performed and the objective of this study was to determine whether HBO therapy might enhance the effects of an anti-parkinson treatment in a parkinson’s patient as an adjunct therapeutic modality. The results of the HBOT therapy surprised even the researchers. “During the treatment period, the patient voluntarily reduced his Sinemet doses until he was completely off the drug after 3-4 weeks of HBO therapy, which was an unexpected result. He has continued to remain off of Sinemet therapy. No complications or adverse side effects such as myopia were observed. The long-term exposure of HBO was tolerated well by the patient.” The patient had such remarkable results with HBOT that he was able to completely stop taking his Parkinson’s medications. I call that quite successful.
A fascinating but quite technical HBOT research study, Oxygen, a Key Factor Regulating Cell Behavior during Neurogenesis and Cerebral Diseases4, showed “it is also possible to induce the neurogenesis in vivo by the modification of the oxygen environment around the body, which provides us a novel idea to promote the ability of learning and memory because of the involvement of neurogenesis in the process of cognition (Kempermann and Gage, 2002), and reminds us a new method for treating some mental illness because of the links between adult neurogenesis and mental disorders, such as Alzheimer’s Disease and schizophrenia (DeCarolis and Eisch, 2010).”
In another 2012 study, Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for vascular dementia³, the researchers reported “patients receiving HBOT plus donepezil had significantly better cognitive function than the donepezil only group after 12 weeks of treatment.”
As it relates specifically to multiple sclerosis, the following are references indicating that HBOT dramatically improves the symptoms and the quality of life :
In the article, The Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy – The True Story, Richard A. Neubauer, MD and Sheldon Gottlieb, Phd, present their powerful research. As they state, “In simplest terms these MRI films show the disappearance of lesions in the mid brain after a single treatment with hyperbaric oxygenation (1.5 ATA at one hour).” WOW! I urge you to give this article a very thorough read and take a look at the images.
Jain, K.K. MD. Textbook of Hyperbaric Medicine. Third Edition. Chapter 20: Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy in Multiple Sclerosis. Hogrefe & Huber Publishers: Kirkland, Washington, 1999. Pp 373-381.
“They studied only patients with a low Kurtzke disability score — KDS and matched patients in the experimental and control groups according to age, sex, age at onset of the disease, duration, and type of disease, and disability before randomization. It was shown that at 2 ATA once a day for 90 minutes, 5 days a weeks to a total of 20 treatments, objective improvement in mobility, fatigue, balance and bladder function occurred in 12 of 17 patients. Those patients having less severe form of the disease had a more favorable and long lasting response. In contrast, only 1 out of 20 placebo-treated patients showed a positive change. The findings of all the long-term studies of established Ms patients suggest that regular HBOT favorably influences the course of the disease. This implies that treatment should be instigated as soon as the condition is diagnosed and before irreversible lesions have become established.”
Arehart-Treichel, Joan. The retreat of Multiple Sclerosis. Science News. February 26, 1983, Vol. 123 Issue 9, p142.
Reports on two treatments that have halted disease progression or even reduced disability in some patients with multiple sclerosis. Treatments combining the immunosuppressant drug cyclophosphamide with ACTH in the treatment and the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on treatment of the disease were both found to benefit the patient. Both regimens were reported in the New England Journal of Medicine by Howard L. Weiner of Harvard Medical School and Boguslav H. Fischer and co-workers at the New York University medical Center.
As we have seen above and in many other clinical studies, HBOT has been demonstrated to be effective for neurological conditions. Neurological disorders are intensely debilitating, not only for the person afflicted but becomes especially difficult for their family and loved ones to manage. HBOT offers hope…
Improve Brain Functioning & Performance with HBOT
- Increases Circulatory Pathways in the Brain
- Enhance Memory and Mental Performance
- Improves Oxygenation to the Brain
Improve Brain Repair & Recovery with HBOT
- Recovers & Repairs Damaged Brain Tissue
- Develops & Regains Cognitive/Motor Functions
Attenuate Nervous System Inflammation with HBOT
- Reduces Brain Swelling
- Decreases Pressure within the Skull
- Reduces Risk of Compromised Blood Flow to the Brain
- Minimizes Oxidative Stress
Increase Regeneration of the Nervous System with HBOT
- Stimulates the Creation of New Brain Cells
- Facilitates the Formation of New Brain Connections
- Promotes the Construction of New Brain Tissue
1: Boussi-Gross R, Golan H, Fishlev G, et al. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Can Improve Post Concussion Syndrome Years after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury – Randomized Prospective Trial. Ai J, ed. PLoS ONE. 2013;8(11):e79995. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0079995.
2) Hoggard ML, Johnson KE and Shirachi DY. Chico Hyperbaric Center, Chico, CA 95926 and Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, T. J. Long School of Pharmacy, University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA 95207, USA.
3) Xiao Y, Wang J, Jiang S, Luo H. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for vascular dementia. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2012, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD009425. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009425.pub2.
4) Zhang K, Zhu L, Fan M. Oxygen, a Key Factor Regulating Cell Behavior during Neurogenesis and Cerebral Diseases. Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience. 2011;4:5. doi:10.3389/fnmol.2011.00005.