Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been controversial in the cancer world. Many oncologists tell their patients not to use it out of fear of making the cancer worse. However, that fear is based on a lack of knowledge on how hyperbaric oxygen works. Most cancer cells find a way to spread and stimulate the body to create new blood vessels which then feeds the cancer. Hyperbaric oxygen also can help create new blood vessels and so the fear is that by creating new blood vessels, it will increase the spread of the cancer.
That is not true. Increasing the oxygen concentration in the body actually helps to kill cancer cells. Cancer cells don’t like a healthy, oxygen-rich environment. And, hyperbaric therapy stimulates other anti-inflammatory chemicals that stop the cancer from spreading. And now, even more good news: a new study out last month shows that hyperbaric oxygen can actually enhance the effects of certain chemotherapy agents used for cancer! The study showed great results with tumors in the brain, breast and liver.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy wouldn’t be the only treatment I would recommend for helping someone with cancer, but it would definitely be on the list. If you have questions about how hyperbarics can help your cancer treatment, please give us a call.