Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is a form of therapy designed to make more oxygen available to the body. Oxygen is the primary source of energy required by the body for the proper operation of all major systems. Oxygen feeds the body, supports the immune system, destroys toxic substances, and promotes new cell growth. Increasing the uptake of oxygen enhances those processes. HBOT safely increases the body’s oxygen uptake by raising the barometric pressure. The therapy is performed in an enclosed hyperbaric chamber that is pressurized to allow the patient inside to experience atmospheric pressures greater than typical environmental pressures.
Studies have demonstrated physiological and molecular HBOT-related mechanisms of neuroprotection, including “improved cerebral oxygenation, reduced blood–brain barrier breakdown, decreased inflammation, reduced cerebral edema, decreased intracranial pressure, reduced oxidative burden, reduced metabolic derangement, decreased apoptotic cell death and increased neural regeneration” (Matchett, Martin & Zhang, 2009).