What is Hyperbaric Oxygenation Treatment (HBOT)?

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) consists in breathing high concentrations of oxygen (O2) into a hyperbaric chamber pressurized above normal atmospheric pressure (at sea level, 1.0 absolute atmosphere or ATA)

For clinical use, the pressure should be at least 1.4 ATA. Hyperbaric Oxygenation is used as primary therapy in some pathologies and intoxications, or as an adjunct in pathologies with inadequate supply of oxygen to the tissues.

To understand how this therapy works, it is necessary to understand the main function of respiration: to enter oxygen into the body to distribute it through the circulatory system to all organs and tissues.

The physical-chemical foundation of Hyperbaric Therapy is essentially based on two physical laws that describe the behavior of gases:


Hyperoxia is the result of the combination of increased plasma oxygen dissolution and increased pressure, which is the therapeutic mechanism of hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

When hyperoxia is achieved, a series of biochemical, physiological and therapeutic effects are triggered.

Physiological Effects of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

History of Hyperbaric Medicine:

Hyperbaric Medicine has more than 350 years of history, although its formal application is much more recent

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Henshaw built a hypo and hyperbaric chamber. It is believed to be the first hyperbaric chamber and was called “domicilium”.

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The scientific discovery of the properties of oxygen was made, which allowed it to advance with the study and development of hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

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The first hyperbaric chamber was built in Canada. A year later it was built in New York by Corning to treat nervous disorders.

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The treatment of decompression sickness of the diver began and between 1920 and 1930 hypoxic problems (circulatory, cardiac) began to be treated.

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The first hyperbaric operating room for cardiopulmonary surgeries and skin grafts was created.

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The first successful treatment of gas gangrene was performed and the indications were extended to wounds, anerobic infections, carbon monoxide poisoning.

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Pressures lower than 2 ATA are described as optimal for neurological disorders, significantly broadening the indications.