Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Helps Heal Radiation Proctitis

If you or a loved-one have received radiation therapy and have rectal or pelvic discomfort, you may have radiation proctitis. It is a condition that occurs as a side effect of radiation therapy used to treat cancer in the pelvic area. The radiation damages the lining of the rectum, leading to a range of symptoms such as rectal bleeding, diarrhea, urgency to have a bowel movement, and pain during bowel movements. Obviously, these symptoms can greatly impact your daily life and overall comfort.

Fortunately, there is hope: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is a common standard of care for patients with radiation proctitis. The treatment is approved by the FDA, and is reimbursed by Medicare and most private insurance companies. Learn more about what hyperbaric oxygen therapy by looking here: What is HBOT?

Man healed from radiation proctitis

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Helps Heal Radiation Proctitis

If you or a loved-one have received radiation therapy and have rectal or pelvic discomfort, you may have radiation proctitis. It is a condition that occurs as a side effect of radiation therapy used to treat cancer in the pelvic area. The radiation damages the lining of the rectum, leading to a range of symptoms such as rectal bleeding, diarrhea, urgency to have a bowel movement, and pain during bowel movements. Obviously, these symptoms can greatly impact your daily life and overall comfort.

Fortunately, there is hope: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is a common standard of care for patients with radiation proctitis. The treatment is approved by the FDA, and is reimbursed by Medicare and most private insurance companies. Learn more about what hyperbaric oxygen therapy by looking here: What is HBOT?

How Hyperbarics Helps

icon

Reduces pain and swelling

icon

Salvages and revitalizes damaged tissues

icon

Builds new blood vessels

icon

Increases blood supply to tissues and bones

icon

Heals infections and supercharges antibiotics

icon

Produces and mobilizes stem cells

icon

Softens fibrous tissue, which often inhibits range of motion

icon

Regrows healthy new tissue

Research shows that HBOT delivers promising results in the management of radiation proctitis

Radiation treatment can destroy cancer and save a patient’s life, but it also can induce secondary injuries. When you undergo hyperbaric oxygen therapy sessions, the increased oxygen levels in your bloodstream help improve the healing process in the damaged tissues of your rectum. Here's how it works:

  1. Increases the oxygen supply to damaged tissues: The increased oxygen levels delivered during HBOT increase the amount of oxygen reaching the damaged tissues. Oxygen is a vital component for tissue repair, and by supplying more of it, HBOT stimulates healing processes.
  2. Reduces Inflammation: Radiation proctitis often involves inflammation, causing discomfort and further damage. HBOT helps reduce inflammation by improving blood flow and promoting the release of growth factors that facilitate tissue repair.
  3. Increases neovascularization: HBOT encourages the formation of new blood vessels, a process known as neovascularization. These new vessels bring in oxygen-rich blood to the damaged areas, promoting healing and reducing symptoms.
  4. Enhances Immune Response: HBOT also helps strengthen the immune system, enabling it to fight off infections and promote healing. By improving the body's defenses, HBOT aids in the recovery process.

Does hyperbaric oxygen stimulate cancer growth? Some people wonder: If HBOT creates new blood vessels and stimulates cell reproduction, could it also stimulate cancer cells to grow? Numerous research studies by oncologists and other qualified researchers show that:

  1. Hbot does not cause cancer cells or tumors to grow or multiply. That means that HBOT will not stimulate cancer recurrence or growth. They wrote “the conclusion in both reviews was that HBO did not promote cancer growth, and that the use of HBO in patients with malignancies was considered safe.” Target Oncol. 2012 Dec; 7(4): 233–242.
  2. Some recent studies in mice have shown that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can reduce and even reverse the growth of tumors in the breast. At this point, more data is required to confirm such a hypothesis, but the data appears promising!
  3. Hyperbaric oxygen augments certain specific chemotherapy drugs, making them much more effective at killing tumors.
  4. Some studies show that treating head and neck radiation injuries with hyperbarics can produce a reduction in cancer recurrence. The hypothesis of these researchers is that hyperbaric oxygen therapy repairs damaged mitochondria in some precancerous and damaged cells. This too has not been confirmed, and yet data from these studies also appears quite promising.

A large percentage of Providers who refer patients to Bay Area Hyperbarics also prescribe hyperbaric oxygen therapy pre- and post-surgery, to strengthen the tissues and bones and ensure that healing occurs successfully and without complications. With radiation damaged in areas such as the head and neck, 20 treatments of hyperbaric oxygen are often prescribed before surgery to regrow tissues, bones and stabilize the jaw. After surgery, these patients are prescribed 10 treatments to complete the healing, and to prevent complications. At Bay Area Hyperbarics, we have successfully treated patients with radiation damage for over 25 years. Hyperbaric medicine has helped hundreds of patients return to normal lives. Most patients also tell us that hyperbarics healed their fatigue from “chemo brain” and radiation, so they could regain their previous high levels of energy.

Patient Experiences

Listen to what real patients have to say about their experiences.
  • Unbranded
  • Unbranded
  • Unbranded
  • Fiona, a lively and proud mother of five grown children and an avid gardener, had received radiation many years prior to her arriving at Bay Area Hyperbarics, that emerged as damage to her bone. It caused a severe infection in the bones in the roof of her mouth. In addition, Fiona was concerned about her low energy levels. Before HBOT, Fiona's doctors had tried antibiotics, to no avail. But with HBOT and antibiotics together, it cured the bone infection in her mouth, and healed and regrew her bones and gums. She said she also got back enough energy that she could again garden.

    Fiona, 62

    HBOT cured a bone infection, regrew her bones and gums and helped her regain her energy.
  • Howard had very painful open sores in his mouth as a result of cancer treatment. He had already lost a few teeth, and he and his doctor were concerned that he might lose more. But what worried his son even more was that Howard had lost too much weight. Fortunately for Howard, HBOT stabilized two loose teeth and healed his mouth sores. His ability to chew again then enabled him to eat enough that he returned to a healthy weight.

    Howard, 74

    Stabilized teeth, healed his mouth sores and increased weight to a healthy level.
  • Josephina, a 61-year-old woman, lived and took care of an elderly friend half the year on the coast of Oregon. She is a quiet spoken, thoughtful woman who had cancer in her mouth 18 years prior to coming in for hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The radiation that was used to treat her cancer many years before was very successful. However, she went to her dentist and complained of her tooth feeling loose. The radiation had started to damage the circulation in her mandible and her gums. Her tooth had died and her dentist wanted to remove it. Her dentist also thought that she had two other teeth that were threatened as well. Josephina was sent to an oral surgeon who diagnosed osteoradionecrosis, which is death of the bone due to radiation injury. The blood vessels in the jaw start to die off due to radiation damage. When this happens the bone can get very fragile and sometimes fracture which creates a much bigger problem including a long and difficult recovery. So to avoid this, and prior to taking out her tooth, her surgeon sent her for hyperbaric treatments. The Marx protocol was used which included 20 treatments prior to removing the tooth to revascularize and thus strengthen the jaw. After removing the tooth Deborah returned for the remaining 10 more session to insure the bone heals up properly. In her case, Josephina was fortunate that the bone was strengthened with hyperbarics prior to more teeth dying. Indeed, she was pleased that she did not lose any further teeth. Two years later she came back to visit and say hello. She still had all the rest of her teeth.

    Josephina, 61

    Radiation damaged circulation in her mouth, threatening her teeth. HBOT saved her teeth.
  • Unbranded
    Fiona, 62
    HBOT cured a bone infection, regrew her bones and gums and helped her regain her energy.
    Fiona, a lively and proud mother of five grown children and an avid gardener, had received radiation many years prior to her arriving at Bay Area Hyperbarics, that emerged as damage to her bone. It caused a severe infection in the bones in the roof of her mouth. In addition, Fiona was concerned about her low energy levels. Before HBOT, Fiona's doctors had tried antibiotics, to no avail. But with HBOT and antibiotics together, it cured the bone infection in her mouth, and healed and regrew her bones and gums. She said she also got back enough energy that she could again garden.
  • Unbranded
    Howard, 74
    Stabilized teeth, healed his mouth sores and increased weight to a healthy level.
    Howard had very painful open sores in his mouth as a result of cancer treatment. He had already lost a few teeth, and he and his doctor were concerned that he might lose more. But what worried his son even more was that Howard had lost too much weight. Fortunately for Howard, HBOT stabilized two loose teeth and healed his mouth sores. His ability to chew again then enabled him to eat enough that he returned to a healthy weight.
  • Unbranded
    Josephina, 61
    Radiation damaged circulation in her mouth, threatening her teeth. HBOT saved her teeth.
    Josephina, a 61-year-old woman, lived and took care of an elderly friend half the year on the coast of Oregon. She is a quiet spoken, thoughtful woman who had cancer in her mouth 18 years prior to coming in for hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The radiation that was used to treat her cancer many years before was very successful. However, she went to her dentist and complained of her tooth feeling loose. The radiation had started to damage the circulation in her mandible and her gums. Her tooth had died and her dentist wanted to remove it. Her dentist also thought that she had two other teeth that were threatened as well. Josephina was sent to an oral surgeon who diagnosed osteoradionecrosis, which is death of the bone due to radiation injury. The blood vessels in the jaw start to die off due to radiation damage. When this happens the bone can get very fragile and sometimes fracture which creates a much bigger problem including a long and difficult recovery. So to avoid this, and prior to taking out her tooth, her surgeon sent her for hyperbaric treatments. The Marx protocol was used which included 20 treatments prior to removing the tooth to revascularize and thus strengthen the jaw. After removing the tooth Deborah returned for the remaining 10 more session to insure the bone heals up properly. In her case, Josephina was fortunate that the bone was strengthened with hyperbarics prior to more teeth dying. Indeed, she was pleased that she did not lose any further teeth. Two years later she came back to visit and say hello. She still had all the rest of her teeth.

Patients: Start with Hyperbarics

It's easy to start with Hyperbarics. Just follow these simple steps
1

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 hyperbaric is right for you.
2

We talk with your insurance

Our medical staff contacts Medicare or private insurance to receive authorization and create a plan with you.
3

You get on the road to recovery

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

Still looking for answers?

We're here to help. Contact us today to learn more about how hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help you.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • What is the CPT code for HBOT?
    The CPT code for HBOT is G0277.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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 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.

CONTACT US

Leave us a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

FIND US HERE

San Jose/Los Gatos Clinic
14589 South Bascom Avenue,
Los Gatos, CA 95032

PH: 408-356-7438
TREATMENT HOURS
Mon-Fri: 5:30 am – 8:00 pm
Sat & Sun: 8:00 am – 2:30 pm
BILLING HOURSMon-Fri: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
NEW PATIENTSMon-Fri: 8:00 am – 2:30 pm

©2024 Bay Area Hyperbarics. All Rights Reserved