Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is an alternative treatment used to promote healing. With this treatment, a patient is placed in a hyperbaric oxygen therapy chamber, in which the air pressure is increased to higher than normal air pressure so that the patient’s lungs can absorb more oxygen.
The pressurized oxygen expelled within the chamber is believed to help your blood carry more oxygen and therefore promote healing and wellness.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy increases the amount of oxygen the blood can carry. It is believed this increase in blood oxygen temporarily restores normal levels of blood gases and allows tissue function to promote healing and fight infections.
It is important to thoroughly research any treatment, medication or alternative therapy and discuss it with your doctor before you begin any new regiment.
It is the objective of the Adrenal Alternatives Foundation to educate all adrenal patients on the risks and benefits of all possible treatments. Upon our research, we discovered the risks of hyperbaric oxygen therapy as it pertains to adrenal insufficiency. Below are a few extracts from two studies that address these concerns. Further reading/studies are in the sources at the end of this post.
(NOTE- There is no cure for adrenal insufficiency, except in the cases of steroid induced adrenal suppression. Never discontinue your steroid medication. Any alternative treatment/medication/therapy that claims to cure adrenal insufficiency is false.)
Abstract of the Undersea & Hyperbaric Medical Society 2008 Annual Scientific Meeting June 26-28, 2008 Salt Lake City Marriott Downtown, Salt Lake City, Utah.
RESULTS: The attendant with Addison’s disease was found to have a drop from a morning level of 16.5 ug/dl to a critical level of 1.4 ug/dl. Subsequent testing without HBOT showed a lesser, non-critical drop of 29.1ug/dl to 9 ug/dl (normal range for the circadian cycle).
US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health – Effect of hyperbaric conditions on plasma stress hormone levels. Department of Anesthesiology, Turku University Hospital, Finland.
Cortisol levels decreased significantly (P = 0.001) during the treatments. No significant changes were found in other analyzed hormones.
It is important to be aware that hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been shown to decrease serum cortisol levels, therefore making this treatment a concern for those with adrenal disease.
Discuss any treatments, alternative therapies and medications with your doctor before trying any new regiment.
If you are a cortisol pump user, you will not be able to have your pump within the hyperbaric chamber to administer your cortisol. Due to the high oxygen concentration, any battery operated devices are a fire concern.
If you are considering any alternative therapies, please research them thoroughly and discuss them with your doctor before you begin any medication, treatment or regiment.