Hyperbarics Heals Damage to the Breast Following Cancer Treatment


Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) has been proven as an effective treatment for cancer related pain, damage and fatigue. Whether the damage or pain originated from radiation treatments, chemotherapy or surgery, patients that get HBOT often experience profound relief. That’s because one of the biggest benefits of HBOT is that it halts ongoing radiation damage to breast tissue, bones, skin and often nerves. Additionally, it builds healthy new cells and regrows tissues, muscle, skin and helps to regenerate the nerves that have been damaged. No person should have to suffer when oxygen therapy is available to reverse damage, grow healthy new tissue and relieve fatigue. With HBOT, those recovering from cancer can feel like their old selves.

It turns out that while 5 - 10% of patients experience direct damage resulting from radiation or surgery as part of their cancer treatments, up to 50% experience a persistent and intense pain in and around the breast, armpits, shoulder, neck, nipple, or even the back. Fortunately, hyperbaric oxygen therapy is covered by most major insurance companies to help resolve not only the damage, but also the pain resulting from these treatments. There is no need for you or your family members to suffer any longer.

Some patients experience intense swelling, fibrosis (scar tissue), tissue death and skin other changes. Some patients further describe the pain as more of a tightness, tenderness, or a burning sensation that may manifest as an open sore or even general fatigue throughout their body. Unfortunately, according to many physicians, if not treated properly, this pain could last the rest of a patient’s life.

As such, early HBOT intervention is critical in achieving success, and in some cases, preventing loss of life. One study showed that hemorrhagic cystitis patients who do not receive HBOT treatments experience a 3.7% mortality rate. [3]

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How Hyperbarics Helps

  • Reduces pain and swelling
  • Builds new blood vessels and blood supply to health tissues and bones
  • Builds new collagen, skin and tissues
  • Mobilizes stem cells and kills infections
  • It is safe, comfortable and pain free

What the Research Says

The research that highlights the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in treating damage to the breast and soft tissue as a result of radiation damage is extensive. We provide you with a summary of that research here.


  1. HBOT heals skin ulcers after mastectomies and radiation therapy
    A case report. Enomoto et al, Nov, 2017. OpenInNewTab
  2. Hyperbarics heals radiation necrosis
    Matos et al, Jan, 2022. OpenInNewTab
  3. Hyperbarics treats delayed radiation injury
     Cooper et al, August, 2022. OpenInNewTab
  4. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy heals compromised grafts and flaps
    Ashish Francis et al, Jan, 2017. OpenInNewTab
  5. HBOT helps heal from bilateral skin-sparing mastectomies
    A Case Report. Copeland-Halperin et al April, 2016. OpenInNewTab
  6. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for late radiation-induced tissue toxicity
    Patient-reported outcome measures in breast cancer patients. Teguh et al, Sept, 2016. . OpenInNewTab
  7. Hyperbaric oxygen as an adjunctive treatment for delayed radiation injury of the chest wall
    A retrospective review of twenty-three cases. (Feldmeier et al, 1995)  OpenInNewTab

Patient Experiences

  • Joyce-33-Image-1

    Joyce, 33

    Regained pain-free arm movement and removed discoloration on her breast

    Warm & friendly, Joyce had a discolored patch about the size of a silver dollar on her breast. It was pale skin in striking contrast to the rest of her breast which was a beautiful coffee color.

    She said the patch was still painful and she was not able to raise her arm above her shoulder. It just hurt too much. Thirty treatments of HBOT and she could swing her arm in every direction even above her head. The discolored painful patch had healed up and disappeared. Her skin was smooth and best of all it felt normal and didn’t hurt.

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  • Amelia-72-Image-1

    Amelia, 72

    HBOT regrew skin and layers of breast tissue where there previously was a hole in her breast

    Amelia was a lovely and lively 72 year old poet and world traveler. However, radiation treatments from several years past had slowly destroyed the skin tissue and her underlying rib.

    She had had two different surgeons try to close the hole that had appeared beside her nipple. The skin was fragile and would not regrow. She had 40 hyperbaric treatments, which regrew the skin and layers of breast tissue underneath

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  • Mary-54-Image-1

    Mary, 54

    Her skin had worn away after radiation. HBOT grew her skin back

    Mary was a grateful, passionate and dedicated nurse who loved playing the piano. Seven years after a double mastectomy and radiation without reconstructive surgery, Mary had a patch of skin on the right side of her chest that kept thinning.

    By the time we saw her, the skin had worn away, leaving a weeping patch of underlying tissue. The area was the size of her hand. She kept covered it with gauze and tape. It didn’t hurt but the dripping was annoying and it could get infected which was dangerous not only for her but her patients as well. Also, the patch was continuing to grow bigger as the skin cells continued to die. This was a side effect of the radiation. The skin grew back with 40 treatments. Mary was happily able continue her nursing career.

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Get Started with Hyperbarics

Give us a call

Did a physician refer you? If so, they can download and fax us back a patient referral form. If not, our medical staff will discuss whether hyperbarics is right for you.

We talk with your insurance

Our medical staff contacts Medicare or private insurance to receive authorization and create a plan with you.

You get on the road to recovery

We do a medical intake, explain everything you need to know, and you get started on your hyperbaric oxygen therapy sessions

Still looking for answers?

To learn more about HBOT, take a look at our FAQs.

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  • What is Hyperbaric Medicine?

    Hyperbaric medicine, also called hyperbaric oxygen therapy or HBOT, is a medical treatment where a patient sits or lies in pressurized chamber and breathes 100% oxygen. In HBOT, oxygen dissolves into the blood, thus raising the oxygen concentration to very high levels.This increased oxygen is a primary building block for tissues, muscle, and bone repair. Among other benefits, it kicks off cell reproduction, heals injuries and infection more rapidly, and decreases inflammation.

  • Can HBOT help Neuropathy?

    Hyperbaric treatments help heal neuropathy by regrowing small blood vessels and nerves that have died from disease, injuries from radiation and aging. Patients often experience numbness and or pain when they start treatment. Hyperbaric treatments most often bring back sensation and make, for example, walking easier and more enjoyable.

  • Does HBOT kill cancer cells?

    Current research indicates that hyperbaric oxygen does not kill cancer cells. However, there has been a small amount of research indicating that hyperbaric oxygen might reduce the size of certain tumors. Also, there has been a study on mice using hyperbaric oxygen, along with a ketogenic diet, to reduce tumors. Hyperbaric oxygen causes many different healing modalities to kick into gear. Could its effect on strengthening the immune system inhibit the growth of cancer cells? Nobody knows. There are numerous studies conclusively showing that hyperbaric oxygen does not encourage cancer cells or tumors to grow. Some patients claim the hyperbaric oxygen makes them feel a lot more comfortable and functional after chemotherapy and also during healing. Note that some chemotherapy drugs are not to be used with hyperbaric oxygen, as the chemotherapy drugs can be enhanced and thus become toxic. A good hyperbaric oxygen facility (such as Bay Area Hyperbarics) will always call the chemotherapy manufacturer to ensure that hyperbaric oxygen therapy will be helpful and not damaging to the patient.

  • Why would a physician consider HBOT?

    A physician would consider using hyperbaric chamber therapy under a variety of situations. Physicians most typically refer patients to hyperbarics when the patient is not healing with traditional medical interventions and hyperbaric chamber therapy is approved by Medicare for this condition.

    Some patients experience significant unresolved pain and unremitting disease states that the mechanisms of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in a hyperbaric chamber are known to affect, such as the down regulation of inflamatory genes. For an example, some patients have experienced severe, unremitting hives with itching, which did not improve with any specialists interventions.

    Some physicians will consider hyperbaric chamber therapy if the patient has no other good avenues for improving their failing health, and they know the hyperbaric chamber therapy is safe and will not harm the patient.

  • What is the CPT code for HBOT?

    The CPT code for HBOT is G0277.

  • What is Hypebaric Oxygen Therapy?

    Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HB0T) is a medical treatment where you inhale 100% oxygen in a chamber with increased atmospheric pressure. HBOT injects 400x the oxygen into your tissues and bones and mobilizes stem cells. It regrows healthy tissues in the brain, blood vessels, skin and bones. It also reduces pain and swelling, and speeds recovery.

    It is simple, effective and painless.

  • Does Medicare cover HBOT?

    Medicare covers Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for approved conditions, and many insurance companies also cover approved conditions. If your condition is not approved by your insurance, we can discuss our special rates. Give us a call at (408) 356–7438. We are happy to discuss your options with you.

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