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Clinical Director Hope Fine, RRT-CHT

hbot therapy

H.O.P.E. For Diabetes Wound Care with HBOT Therapy

What is HBOT Therapy?

Hbot therapy involves the inhalation of 100% pure oxygen while in a pressurized environment. The air we breathe consists of approximately a fifth of the amount that you would receive in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber. The oxygen rich air absorbs into the bloodstream and enables you to perform more efficiently while allowing your body to speed up the healing process. Studies are being done on the efficacy of hyperbaric oxygen treatments. There are also various diagnoses that can be treated with HBOT Therapy. Some are approved by the FDA, some are being researched as alternative treatments and others are conditional.

What is diabetes?

Insulin is a hormone that is created by your pancreas; it aids the transference of glucose (sugar) into your cells and enables you to use the glucose as fuel. Diabetes is a medical condition wherein the body is not able to effectively process and utilize sugar in your body. This means is that your body may not be producing insulin or the insulin in your body does not work as it should. When this process is restricted, you may have one of two types of diabetes.

  • Type 1

    It is an autoimmune condition whereby your body regards healthy cells as foreign. In the case of type 1 diabetes, the body regards insulin as a foreign entity and attacks and destroys cells which produce insulin.  This means that there is no insulin in your body to transfer glucose into your cells, causing an increase of glucose in your blood.

    While there is no definitive conclusion as to why this occurs, ongoing research tells us that it has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle.

  • Type 2

    Due to varying genetic and environmental factors, type 2 diabetes can occur. With type 2 diabetes, your body doesn’t make enough insulin or the insulin produced does not function correctly. This leads to an increase of glucose in the blood.

    Type 2 diabetes can be averted or delayed by means of a healthy well balanced lifestyle.

However, the problem is that when a patient suffers from diabetes, he or she may have problems healing.  These problems are a result of issues with their peripheral arteries which may not function as they should. This means that as the smaller blood vessels become narrower; circulation is therefore reduced, causing peripheral neuropathy as well as reducing the supply of nutrients and oxygen that the cell tissue and nerves need in order to heal.  An abundance of glucose in the cells diminishes the role of red blood cells, which carry nutrients to the affected tissue; this in turn lowers the efficacy of the white blood cells to fight an infection.

HBOT Therapy and Diabetic Wound Care

While diabetics struggle to heal due to a lack of oxygen in their tissue cells, hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help speed up the healing process. Oxygen is crucial to the healing of wounds.  While in a hyperbaric oxygen producing environment (H.O.P.E), you are exposed to more oxygen than normal. This saturates into your bloodstream and is distributed within your body to your cell tissue and nerves. This will aid and speed up the healing process and lower the risk of infection or amputation. Multiple studies have been done and they show that HBOT therapy can hasten the healing process while reducing the risk of complications.

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