That is not an off-shoot of the cable channel, it is a therapy that can be used for brain injury.  Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy has been in the distance as a treatment for head injury, specifically concussion for a few years.  The main reason is the lack of support from the insurance companies as pharmaceuticals seem to be the main concern.

What we do know is there is not a “pill” that can solve the mysteries of concussion/mTBI, but we are now starting to see results from therapeutic modalities that can help: vestibular rehabilitation, balance training, cognitive training, dual-task therapy.  However HBOT seems to not be gaining traction.  Yes, there are not “mounds” of research behind this treatment but what is it about a non-invasive treatment that does not get recognition.  Many have heard about elite athletes using hyperbaric chambers for recovery from injury, as pressurized oxygen can speed healing.

HBOT was initially used for diving decompression including The Bends, it evolved to treat carbon-monoxide poisoning and recently is being used for tissue healing in wound therapy.  If more places are getting these chambers what would be the “downside” of attempting this therapy.  Granted there are some that would not do well in a small chamber, but if the pressurized oxygen therapy can help with recovery from brain injury, then we should be thinking hard about using it.

I was recently forwarded an article that dealt with two case studies as well as looking into the barriers HBOT faces.

Visgar and Sports Related TBI-CTE-2 Case Rpts (Stoller 2011)

If anyone has more information about HBOT you can send it our way, I also found a good resource for this as well,

4 thoughts on “HBOT

  1. Xavier Figueroa September 2, 2011 / 16:31

    Hi Dustin,

    Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is an approved treatment for 15 indications according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. Unfortunately, TBI is not covered as there are almost no large scale clinical trials that have looked at the effectiveness of HBOT to treat this type of brain injury.

    In the past few years, HBOT for TBI’s and sports-concussions has been gaining credibility as case reports have come out with clearly measureable improvements on TBI symptoms and neurocognitive scores (see below).

    A preliminary national study (sponsored by the IHMF) looking at the safety of HBOT for TBIs is starting to wrap up ( and the prelimnary results are looking good. Plans are underway to get a phase I clincal trial to test the efficacy of this treatment and hopefully get an indication from the FDA.

    If you would like to learn more, feel free to visit and download our educational papers on a variety of research projecst we are developing.


    1. Wright JK, Zant E, Groom K, Schlegel RE, Gilliland K. Case report: Treatment of mild traumatic brain injury with hyperbaric oxygen. Undersea Hyperb Med. 2009;36(6):391-9.
    2. Harch PG, Fogarty EF, Staab PK, Van Meter K. Low pressure hyperbaric oxygen therapy and SPECT brain imaging in the treatment of blast-induced chronic traumatic brain injury (post-concussion syndrome) and post traumatic stress disorder: a case report. Cases J. 2009;2:6538. PMCID: 2740054.
    3. Harch PG, Andrews SR, Fogarty E, Lucarini J, Aubrey C, Staab PK, et al. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Treatment of Chronic Mild-Moderate Blast-Induced Traumatic Brain Injury/Post Concussion Syndrome with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Pilot Trial. International Hyperbaric Medical Foundation. 2010.

  2. Joe Bloggs September 4, 2011 / 08:50

    It would be nice to see some real independent research on this matter. Most literature shows it is on little to no value.

    Case studies are not clinical trials. Both the US Army and US Air Force are conducting studies and while the deisgn and objectives are not industry standard they are better than anecdotal events.

  3. Mike April 9, 2012 / 16:02

    Unfortunately the initial article above is not exactly correct. Even though oxygen wasn’t discovered until the 1700’s, the initial use of Hyperbarics was not for diving related injuries. The use of Hyperbaric Oxygen has really only been in affect for about 50 year. Credit for the first Hyperbaric Chamber was given to Mr. Henshaw back in the mid 1600’s. It wasn’t “legitimately” utilized until approximately the mid 1800’s. It wasn’t associated with diving/decompression related injuries until the late 1800’s early 1900’s.

  4. Robert Piane November 6, 2013 / 09:28

    I need to get this out there as a real treatment for a concussion because it worked for me after I had a severe concussion, and I was asked “What are you doing?” by the Doctors as I essentially healed myself. I named it “The Gravity Cure”. I was hit head-on in football practice and ended up in the hospital for two weeks with a broken nose and severe headaches.. The brain scans (in 1972) showed a dark mass had formed under my skull that covered the area of the hit, the about 5” in diameter under my forehead area. It was bad, so bad a priest was called in to pray because they felt I might never recover. The headaches were horrendous. I found a way to stop them. All I did was NOT lay on my back as they kept telling me to do. When I laid face down in my pillow the headaches went away. All I kept thinking was my brain must have torn away from my skull in the impact, and it’s bleeding. If I just let gravity do the work I might fix this, at least it stopped the headaches. I did this every day and night as much as possible. I even watched TV using a mirror. People thought I was nuts, but it stopped the headaches. Two weeks later they did another brain scan just before the planned surgery they had coming next and it was gone. They though it was a miracle. Perhaps, but all I can figure is gravity did the work and I had simply positioned my head to allow it to heal properly. It’s the only thing that makes sense. Simply laying face down must have allowed my brain to settle back against the skull into the proper position using gravity to do the work, closing the wounded area like you do when treating a bleeding cut…you apply pressure to stop the bleeding and put the cut tissue together. If this Gravity Cure helped me I think it can help others not just understand and talk about the symptoms, but actually fix the injury. I went on to play football two years later, wrestle at a high level and even took second in a national Judo tournament while in the USMC and currently own 10 patents, ran multiple companies and still going strong at 56, so my brain works just fine with no headaches or other symptoms except my memory was never as sharp as it was before the injury.. I hope this post can help someone out there.

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