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Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can treat neurological disorders
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Brain Basics (pdf)

- Stroke
- Cerebral Palsy
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Autism
- Lyme Disease
- Multiple Sclerosis

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Neurological Disorders

Concussion | SOURCE |
As concussions in sports become an increasingly prevalent issue, it is important for parents to know how they can help their child recover from concussions, regardless of its severity. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is one of the lowest-risk treatments available, and a good way to be proactive about helping a child suffering from post-concussion syndrome return to the classroom and playing field. Hyperbaric Oxygen chamber

In a study by Dr. Paul Harch, [1] one of the leading doctors in hyperbaric medicine, fifteen military personnel (all previously diagnosed with traumatic brain injury) were treated with forty hyperbaric oxygen treatments. Each patient made significant improvements in injury symptoms, physical exam results, cognitive measurements, and most importantly, quality of life ratings.

No physical injury can heal without oxygen, and the same applies for the brain. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy allows a patient to breathe 100% oxygen (as opposed to air from the atmosphere, which is 21% oxygen and 79% nitrogen) in a pressurized chamber, which creates a higher concentration of oxygen in the bloodstream, which can improve circulation to impaired brain areas.

An article from the Division of Neurosurgery at Linda Loma University Medical Center [2] acknowledges that many brain injuries result in reduced blood supply to affected tissues, which can impair brain function. Increasing the concentration of oxygen in the bloodstream can help repair damaged tissue, and reduce swelling and inflammation.

Typically, the standard approach for treating sports concussions involves a great deal of waiting. Concussed individuals are told to get cognitive rest and not over-stimulate the brain by using the phone and computer. After a concussion, athletes frequently complain of headaches and insomnia, and often privately struggle with anxiety, depression, and poor academic performance due to impaired brain function. Standard treatments may also involve medication, which can produce undesirable side effects.

Thankfully, hyperbaric oxygen therapy is highly effective and has minimal side effects. By comparing the risks of treating versus not treating your child for a concussion, it becomes clear that being proactive is essential. While concussion symptoms may improve through simply resting, they could also worsen. As you think about your athlete's post-concussion treatment, ask yourself: are you and your child willing to deal with persistent effects of head injury?

While the short term symptoms of concussions such as dizziness and headaches may not seem serious, long term problems such as dementia-like symptoms and advanced aging of brain tissue are not to be taken lightly. Brain injuries that go untreated have also been linked to learning disabilities, social and relationship issues, low self-esteem, depression, and alcoholism. What we see as headaches now could present themselves as problems that are serious and difficult to treat in the future.

Although no healthcare facility can promise a cure for concussion symptoms, hyperbarics can provide help to many people, from athletes with minor head injuries to soldiers involved in IED explosions. Our hope is that in the future, hyperbaric oxygen therapy will come to be seen as a low-risk, effective procedure that can help improve many symptoms of head trauma.

Read more: http://www.momsteam.com/health-safety/treating-sports-concussions-with-hyperbaric-oxygen-therapy#ixzz4EyaR3v7M

Stroke is a sudden blood flow disturbance to the brain, and is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. The cause of a stroke is due to a bleed or a blockage to any given part of the brain which produces tissue death by starving the brain cells of oxygen.  The extent of damage can be minimal to severe and can affect a patients cognitive, sensory and motor abilities. The goal of hyperbaric oxygen therapy is to get as much oxygen into the brain as possible helping to revive oxygen starved brain tissue that was damaged but not destroyed by the stroke.  It also stimulates the growth of new blood vessels and repairs the damaged ones, aiding the stroke patient in reduction in spasticity, swelling and improvement in their neurological status.  An aggressive and effective approach to treating stroke is the use of hyperbaric oxygen in conjunction with extensive physical therapy.

Cerebral Palsy
Over 500,000 Americans have cerebral palsy, a term that is used to describe a multitude of chronic disorders which effects body movement.  The NINDS – NIH, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institute of Health, states that cerebral palsy is an umbrella-like term used to describe a group of chronic disorders, where faulty development or damage to the motor area in the brain disrupts the brains ability to adequately control movement and posture.  These disorders are broken down into four categories: spastic, athetoid, ataxic and mixed forms.  Other medical disorders associated with CP are seizures or epilepsy, mental impairment, vision and hearing problems, growth problems, sensation and perception problems.   Studies using Hyperbaric Oxygen therapy have shown reduction in spasticity as well as improvements in vision, hearing and speech.  These improvements vary from patient to patient. 

Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic Brain Injury is when certain nerve cells in the brain may have been permanentely  destroyed.  Althought some of the brain may be permanently  damaged when a  traumatic brain injury occurs a much larger area may be in a dormant state because the amount of oxygen the brain  receives has been reduced due to a decrease in blood flow

Swelling of the brain tissue will also occur in a traumatic brain injury  Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is believed to increase blood flow to the brain and decrease swelling of the brain tissue causing the dormant cells to be revived indicating a  potential for recovery.


Autism is a developmental disorder which is characterized by difficulties in verbal and non verbal communication, social interactions and unusual repetitive or severely limited activities and interests.  Studies have shown that males are four times more likely to have autism than females.  Many autistic children seem to have reduced sensitivity to pain, sound, touch and other sensory stimulation.  Autism is one of five disorders that fails under the umbrella of Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD).

The five disorders under PPD are as listed:

Autistic Disorder

Asperger’s Disorder

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder (CDD)

Rett’s Disorder

PDD – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS)

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy helps by increasing the amount of oxygen to the brain and is also found to be a beneficial in inflammatory conditions facilitating improvement in gut disease, yeast and/or bacteria.

Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection caused by a spirochete that is transmitted to humans by a tick bite. This is usually followed by a bull’s eye rash and erythema migrans, with many other flu like symptoms such as painful joints and muscles, headaches, fatigue, swollen glands, sore throat, fever, mental ‘fog’ and many more.  If left untreated it can become a severely debilitating disease affecting both neurological and motor abilities.  It is recommended that antibiotic therapy be used in conjunction with hyperbaric oxygen and has shone great response, allowing many patients to live more productive lives.

Recommended treatment is a 60 minute treatment twice a day, five days a week followed by a two day rest.  It is recommended a series of 30-60 treatments.  Patients develop a Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction usually within the first week of treatment which is the Lyme bacteria die-off.

Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis is a chronic, recurrent and progressive illness associated with lesions of the nervous system and is now believe to be an inflammatory disease. Due to the various signs and symptoms and time frame between the initial attacks it is sometimes left untreated for years.  A course of treatment should be started as soon as a patient is diagnosed with a regular follow up treatments as needed.  Hyperbaric oxygen treatments have shown a favorable response especially in patients with less advanced stages of the disease.