HBOT As a Treatment for Cardiovascular Disease
The heart is a muscle that gets energy from blood carrying oxygen and nutrients and a constant supply of blood keeps the heart working properly. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a group of conditions that affect the structure and functions of the heart and can include coronary artery diseases including myocardial infarctions, commonly referred to as a heart attack. Heart attack symptoms can include chest pain (angina), pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach, shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort, nausea and/or lightheadedness.
Acute coronary syndrome (ACS) is a term used to describe any condition that results in a sudden reduction in blood flow to the heart. ACS happens when the coronary arteries become narrow or blocked. A heart attack and unstable angina are the two most common types of ACS.
At the Nardella Clinic of Calgary, we offer hyperbaric oxygen therapy services that may prove beneficial in the treatment of cardiovascular disease. Using a specialized chamber, hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) administers pure oxygen at pressures 1.5 – 3 times the normal atmospheric pressure. With this higher pressure, up to 20 times more oxygen can be absorbed by the blood and transferred to injured organs and tissues, including weak cardiac muscle. HBOT can supply oxygen to parts of the heart that are essentially dying and considered non-viable.
Studies done on HBOT and heart health have shown that cardiac patients receiving HBOT treatments are less likely to experience mortality due to acute cardiac episodes. There is also evidence that cardiac patients have more rapid pain relief from angina while receiving HBOT as part of their overall treatment.
In a study conducted in Russia, HBOT managed to normalize electrocardiograms (ECGs) in 100% of patients receiving HBOT treatments. Furthermore, in patients with weak cardiac muscle, HBOT can help pump blood through the entire body more effectively than medications alone. With the magnitude of evidence available, it is apparent that HBOT treatments can provide short and long-term benefits in patients with cardiovascular disease.