A new Israeli study reveals that high-pressure oxygen chambers can help reduce pain for fibromyalgia patients – and may even reverse the condition.
Hyperbaric oxygen chambers are used in many countries to treat patients with embolisms, burns, carbon monoxide poisoning and decompression sickness. Now, an Israeli study shows that the high-pressure pure oxygen treatments are also helpful for people who suffer from fibromyalgia, a chronic pain syndrome affecting an estimated one in 70 Americans, most of them women.
The study, published recently in the journal PLoS ONE, describes how the researchers were able to map the malfunctioning brain regions responsible for the syndrome, and used hyperbaric oxygen treatment to drastically reduce, or even eliminate, the need for pain medication.
“As a physician, the most important finding for me is that 70 percent of the patients could recover from their fibromyalgia symptoms,” said Dr. Shai Efrati, director of the Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research and head of R&D at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center in Tzrifin, and a faculty member at the Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University (TAU).