Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

The 12-person hyperbaric oxygen chamber at HonorHealth Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center.

The 12-person hyperbaric oxygen chamber at Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy helps you heal faster by allowing you to breathe 100 percent oxygen, encouraging tissue growth.

During hyperbaric oxygen therapy at Wound Care and Hyperbaric Services at HonorHealth Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center, you'll receive treatment in a spacious, 12-person hyperbaric chamber or in the comfort of a single-patient acrylic unit, depending on your needs.

Benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy treats a variety of conditions, including chronic wounds. During therapy, you breathe in the 100 percent oxygen under increased atmospheric pressure. This process allows your lungs to gather more oxygen than normal, and your blood carries the oxygen throughout your body to promote healing. Oxygen is a key factor in tissue growth and healing.

The therapy helps:

  • Aid healing.
  • Fight infections.
  • Improve oxygen levels in body tissue.
  • Promote blood vessel formation.
  • Preserve damaged tissue.

Conditions improved through hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen treatment is used in treating some chronic problems and also more serious or urgent problems. If your wound is not responding to advanced treatment, you may qualify for hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

Diabetic wounds of the lower limbs

If you have a serious wound of your foot due to diabetes, your HonorHealth provider will make every effort to promote healing through advanced therapies, by improving nutrition and diabetes control, and by improving circulation to the affected area. However, if your wound still does not heal as would be expected, hyperbaric oxygen therapy may be started to help with the healing process.

Wounds from prior radiation treatment

You may be experiencing chronic wounds due to radiation treatment you've received. Radiation therapy can damage tissue (soft tissue radionecrosis) and bone (osteoradionecrosis) around the treatment site. Months or even years later, that area may develop irritations, bleeding, pain or other problems. Hyperbaric oxygen has been shown to improve circulation to that area and may resolve symptoms related to prior radiation therapy.

Additional conditions treated by hyperbaric therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is also used in treating conditions such as:

  • Acute carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Acute peripheral arterial insufficiency.
  • Acute traumatic peripheral ischemia.
  • Cyanide poisoning.
  • Decompression illness (sometimes referred to as the bends).
  • Crush injuries and suturing of severed limbs.
  • Gas embolism.
  • Gas gangrene.
  • Preparation and preservation of compromised skin grafts.
  • Serious infections such as actinomycosis, chronic refractory osteomyelitis and progressive necrotizing infections.

What to expect during hyperbaric treatment

Throughout the process, you're monitored by a specially trained caregiver. You have access to television, movies, music, reading or resting, depending on your therapy plan.

Because the benefits of therapy come from the increased oxygen in the bloodstream and not with oxygen's direct contact with wounds, your wound dressings are usually left in place.

During the therapy, you may feel pressure in your ears similar to the sensation you feel when landing in an airplane. A specialist will tell you how to clear your ears.

Preparing for hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Tips that your hyperbaric team will share with you to prepare for the hyperbaric chamber include:

  • Wear 100 percent cotton clothing with no zippers or snaps. A gown will be provided, if needed.
  • Hair spray, makeup, synthetic clothing, oils, lotion, grease and newspapers are not permitted.
  • You may be asked to take 400 units of vitamin E daily during treatment to promote healing.
  • Don't smoke — it decreases the treatment's effectiveness.

Insurance coverage

Most insurance plans cover hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Your HonorHealth team will help coordinate referrals or authorizations if they are required by your insurance.

Wound Care and Hyperbaric Services

Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center
7400 E. Osborn Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-882-6700 for referrals and appointments.
480-882-4965 for general inquiries.