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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Hyperbaric oxygen therapy

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Author Topic: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy
Messa
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Anyone had success with HBOT?
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Lymedin2010
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I think HBOT is too expensive for most of us. It is for me.

I may try it just once to see what sort of a herx I get. I am sure it will be grand, although I do not herx on many things as it is.

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Messa
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If anyone has had success or not had success Ide like to hear your story. Shame that it's so expensive. My sister tried it when she had ovarian cancer. She had a colostomy bag because the cancer had blocked off her colon. The oxygen chamber messed up the bag and it all got infected.

This is my only experience with an oxygen chamber so if anyone has any good stories let me know.

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WhitneyS
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I just looked into this, and this was my personal conclusion:

It seems that if you can do it long term-- like at least 6 months, then people often have real improvement. If you do it for only a little while, it will help, but then when you stop sessions, you slide back.

The problem is that its about $2,000 for a WEEK of treatment-- and usually it is 6 days a week. So its very difficult to pay for, and to have the time to attend the daily sessions.

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Messa
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Oh well. Yea I figured it would be that way. Hopefully sometime in the future it will be more recognized and therefor more affordable. I'm sure it would help some of us recover a little more quickly. Thank you so much for the feedback!
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Bugg
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I did about forty five dives in a monoplane chamber. I felt great while doing it due to the rush of oxygen. I did not see any improvement in my overall health with it. I think it was a waste of money. A doctor friend of mine said it can cause oxidative damage so she doesn't think any patient, except one with a wound, should do it.
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Robin123
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It's expensive.

I heard of one person with severe pain who turned the corner after 33 oxygen dives - reported pain level completely lowered.

I heard of another who did HBOT, but still wasn't better, and ended up going to India for stem cell injections and then was much better afterwards!

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timaca
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I did 40 dives then a few more. Do a search using my member # and HBOT and you may find my posts.

It did help me, and I did have a "herx". But when I stopped, I got worse again.

It is expensive and time consuming.

Best, Timaca

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Phoiph
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Hello, all...

I had severe neurological Lyme w/Babesia & Bartonella for 8 years...considered an antibiotic failure, and so ill I was homebound for 5 years straight.

My symptoms were extreme and relentless; too many to list here. I was told, even by LLMD's, that I needed a miracle, and there was nothing more they could do for me (I tried many, many protocols with never any improvement, just a continual spiral downward).

I eventually became so toxic and environmentally sensitive that I could do no treatments for 5 years before starting MILD hyperbaric treatment w/supplemental oxygen (I bought my own chamber and self-treated 1 hour daily).

I now have my life back...working again, running (I had been a runner for 17 years, pre-Lyme), traveling, etc. It has been a miraculous recovery, and it is 100% due to mHBOT (along with meticulous diet, and gradual exercise).

I believe success depends on the frequency and consistency of use...many people say they "tried hyperbaric, but it didn't work"...but if you query them, inevitably they didn't do it consistently or frequently enough...or for a long enough duration. You must be committed to this treatment to have success. Also, research is showing that lower pressures are better for treating certain neurological conditions, so may be why some people with neurological Lyme who used higher pressures in the hard chambers didn't progress.

I almost made the fatal mistake of returning my chamber after 40 consecutive "dives", not feeling any improvement at that point. Fortunately, I was talked into continuing treatment, and felt the first "change" (not necessarily "improvement") after about 2 months.

It was a rocky, 2-step-forward, 1-step back road, but after several months, although I was not completely well, I was functional again, and after 1-1/2 years, I was "back"...

Now, 2 years from the beginning of treatment, I am still noticing benefits from the chamber...and truly have my life back...very active again...no medications...no restrictions...

Low (pressure) and slow WORKS...I'm living proof...

Here's another thread...

http://flash.lymenet.org/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/1/125201#000032

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Beloved
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dear Phoiph,
I invested in a chamber. Excuses have made me stall on doing consistent dives. Perhaps a bit of claustrophobia too. my question I'm putting out here: with progressive HBOT treatments have you or anyone here been able to get off some of these meds- particularly bed meds? I came across an article on meds that cause chronic fatigue. Yep, on there was my Elavil & Klonopin (making me a daytime zombie, and we're not supposed to do caffeine- stresses the Adrenals :-, along w/ the bed meds are my Cymbalta and I think Ultram on some level. (Sucks to be us! Ha!)I am just hoping I can get off or reduce the strength of these fatiguing meds. The Elavil makes me lose hair (sigh)but these meds collectively reduce pain.
Phoish, how long was it(do you recall?)before you were able to begin reducing your meds?
This month (and New Year) I am recommitting to "The Pod" and looking towards a hip replacement in 4-8 weeks. (I'm a walking paraplegic & after 30 years of it the hip is rubbing bone against bone)so for a few? weeks I won't be able to climb into "the Pod.)
An aside about PT for Lyme & hip: It tires me and I'm afraid of it. My beau rides my tail abt not doing my PT to improve my health.
Conclusively,
Beloved

--------------------
Lyme: 1991
DXed: 2008

'Do not go where the path may lead; go where there is no path and leave a trail.' Emerson

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Phoiph
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Hi Beloved...

I am completely medication free.

I quit antibiotics and medications out of necessity 5 years prior to starting hyperbaric, as I was becoming more and more ill and toxic. (My vision even turned yellow as a result of taking Mepron for Babesia.)

I know of someone who recently started mHBOT, and after about 90 dives, although not well yet, is improved enough to start to taper off of her medications, one by one. (Of course, I am not a doctor, and would not suggest anyone go off of their medications without medical supervision.)

Hyperbaric can increase your metabolic rate, and therefore possibly modify the effects of some medications...so this must be taken into consideration also.

I hope you will consider starting to use your chamber as soon as possible prior to your surgery as studies show that it improves recovery time.

If you are unable to get in and out of the chamber post-surgery, I would request that your PT sessions include helping you transfer in and out of the chamber so you could continue your sessions, uninterrupted. They also make a "lift" designed for this purpose...you could ask Lance about this.

I would consider your chamber an ESSENTIAL part of your surgery rehab...as well as your Lyme treatment.

I am of firm opinion that consistency, frequency, and duration of treatments are KEY to success with mHBOT...

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WPinVA
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I looked into doing it several months back, and one of the things I learned is that while Lyme doesn't like oxygen, babesia does. And that, among other things, scared me off from doing it.
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Phoiph
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WPinVA...

I have had many inquiries about Babesia and hyperbaric.

I have yet to find research that supports that mHBOT is contraindicated if you have Babesia. I had a full blown case (as well as Bartonella), and it was the ONLY thing that worked. I have no Babesia symptoms, and I am on no medications.

Even if babesia were to "like" oxygen in vitro (which I have yet to find research on this), consider that things are very different within the body. Hyperbaric is unprecedented in helping the immune system to recover and function properly...which allows it to fight other infections effectively.

It is more than just chasing "bugs"...it is about putting the body/immune system back in charge...

I am including an excerpt from a study on Babesia in dogs (I find some of the best research on Lyme and coinfections in veterinarian journals.)

It suggests that the oxidation process (production of free radicals/oxidative stress) is detrimental to Babesia and other protozoa.

Exposure to free radicals/oxidative stress (also produced by hyperbaric) is the same process by which the cell membrane of the Lyme spirochete is damaged. (It has been noted that the free radicals produced by mild hyperbaric are not harmful to the body, as the body increases its natural production of antioxidants to compensate.)

Here's the quote:

“...Many parasites including protozoa are sensitive to oxidative stress. Sensitivity to oxidative stress has been reported in malaria (Rockett et al., 1991), hepatozoonosis (Kiral et al., 2005), tropical theileriosis (Visser et al., 1995) and babesiosis (Stich et al., 1998). Reactive oxygen species (ROS) and Reactive Nitrogen Species (RNS) are powerful oxidants and nitrating species that can inactivate enzymes and initiate the process of lipid peroxidation and nitration, which leads to radical chain reactions that further damage membranes, nucleic acids and proteins (Muller et al., 2003). These processes may ultimately lead to the killing of parasitic organisms (Rockett et al., 1991; Kiral et al., 2005)...”

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Cass A
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Dear Friends,

A naturopathic doctor friend of mine has come up with and uses a treatment that he says mimics the results of HBOT---he did this to help those with autism, as HBOT treatment is so expensive.

It is getting an inversion table, drinking a small amount of diluted (about 3.5%)FOOD GRADE ONLY hydrogen peroxide, and immediately inverting at a comfortable angle for a few minutes. This gets the oxygen into the brain, as the blood pressure to this area increases due to gravity.

One would do this pretty often, as any treatment needs persistence and consistency.

The cost would be relatively low---a hundred bucks (or a bit more, depending on the inversion system) and then the cost of food-grade hydrogen peroxide at a health food store and the cost of some distilled water for diluting it.

I've not tried this myself as yet, although I do have an inversion table and have found inversion without the hydrogen peroxide helps my neurologic Lyme symptoms.

Best,

Cass A

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Haley
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I was going to consider doing so I tried it one time. I have severe pain in my right ear after doing it. It does not seem to get better.

Phoiph - Do you know of anyone that developed ear problems? What are the potential complications that could occur?

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Haley
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I was going to consider doing so I tried it one time. I have severe pain in my right ear after doing it. It does not seem to get better.

Phoiph - Do you know of anyone that developed ear problems? What are the potential complications that could occur?

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JCarlhelp
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I have gradually been using my chamber. You do have to be careful with the ears. I bought some ear planes the kind for airplanes. I have found that doing the standard things like pinching your nose and blowing, yawning and coming up slowly in the decompression helps. Phoiph knows a lot more.
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JCarlhelp
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I have gradually been using my chamber. You do have to be careful with the ears. I bought some ear planes the kind for airplanes. I have found that doing the standard things like pinching your nose and blowing, yawning and coming up slowly in the decompression helps. Phoiph knows a lot more.
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JCarlhelp
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I have gradually been using my chamber. You do have to be careful with the ears. I bought some ear planes the kind for airplanes. I have found that doing the standard things like pinching your nose and blowing, yawning and coming up slowly in the decompression helps. Phoiph knows a lot more.
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Phoiph
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Haley...

It is very important to go slowly when you are increasing and decreasing pressure in the chamber.

I'm not sure if you were in control of this or not...were you using a home chamber where you control the pressure yourself with a valve, or in a hard chamber where a clinician controlled the pressure increase/decrease?

Were you able to equalize the pressure in your ears during compression and decompression? Did you also have pain during the dive, or just after? What pressure did you dive to? How long has the pain persisted since your dive?

Feeling pressure is normal while pressurizing and depressurizing, and, like JCarl said, you need to equalize the pressure through yawning, opening and closing your mouth, moving your jaw, blowing with nose pinched, etc.

Pain, however, is not okay, and if you feel pain during the compression/decompression process, it means there is pressure on your eardrum that is not equalizing through your Eustachian tubes (i.e., your Eustachian tubes are blocked). In this case, you must turn the valve to release the pressure immediately, and this will relieve the pain by reducing the pressure on the ear drum.

If you ignore the pain and try to keep pressurizing (difficult to do, as the pain would be severe), you could rupture an eardrum. This is rare, however, because with a mild chamber, you are in control of the valve and can immediately adjust the pressure if you feel pain.

What I have found, is that people who have difficulty with their ears initially, will still be able to do hyperbaric, it just might take a little longer to adjust at first. For example, it took me 3 sessions before I could reach full pressure (4.2 PSI), as my ears were so inflamed. The first session, I only reached about 1.5 PSI, and could not increase pressure beyond that due to pain. I stayed at that pressure (the highest I could reach without pain) for the full hour. The next day, I was able to reach 2.5 PSI for 1 hour without discomfort, and by the third day, I reached full pressure without problem, and have had no problems equalizing my ears ever since.

It seems that the Eustachian tubes will stretch and adjust if the process is done slowly and patiently. I know of another person who had severe ear issues before doing hyperbaric; she couldn't fly or drive to different altitudes without pain or discomfort. It took some time, but she is able to equalize her ears without any problems now, and can fly for the first time in years without pain.

***It is never a good idea to do hyperbaric if you have a head cold...as it may not be possible to clear your ears when there is congestion.

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ChelseaSmile
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I was diagnosed with lyme disease about a 2 years ago but I've had it for most of my life. I tried the anti biotic route and the natural route but nothing seemed to really help. The anti biotics just made me feel worse for months without any leeway. Then a lady my mom knew told us about the hyperbaric chamber. With nothing else to lose we decided to try it. I have been using the Hyperbaric chamber for a while now and for a week or two it got really bad, like the lyme was fighting back but after i just stuck it out and kept going in every day i started to feel a change. I have found a new found glimpse of hope i have never had before in my entire life. I have more energy, my thoughts are more clear and less negative and when I'm in the chamber my pain goes away completely. Its become my little safe haven. I honestly would say to anyone who has tried everything and have had no improvement I would try this wonderful gift that i was bless to obtain in my life because I mean what do you have to lose.
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