Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) and Fibromyalgia

by Rashmi Gulati, MD
Rashmi Gulati Head Shot

Symptoms of fibromyalgia are chronic, widespread pain and tenderness to the touch. Typically there is also moderate to severe fatigue. Those affected may also experience heightened sensitivity of the skin, tingling of the skin (often needle-like), achiness in the muscles, prolonged muscle spasms, weakness in the limbs, and nerve pain. Chronic sleep disturbances are also characteristic of fibromyalgia.

Many patients experience cognitive problems, such as impaired concentration and short-term memory problems, and the inability to multitask. This may be directly related to the sleep disturbances experienced by sufferers of fibromyalgia. A number of patients suffering from fibromyalgia who have been treated with hyperbaric oxygen therapy have reported improvement in their pain severity, anxiety levels, and fatigue.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a relatively new treatment for fibromyalgia. However, initial studies seem to illustrate that hyperbaric oxygen therapy has a positive effect on the symptoms of fibromyalgia, including muscle pain and tender points.

A study performed by medical researchers at a Turkish military hospital revealed astonishing results with the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on fibromyalgia patients. This double-blind, placebo-controlled study exposed fibromyalgia patients to a total of 15, 90-minute hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatments. Results of the study indicated that fibromyalgia patients receiving hyperbaric oxygen therapy reported a decreased number of tender points and an increased pain threshold. After 15 sessions, patients recorded half the number of original tender points and twice their original pain threshold.

Patients Medical makes no claims as to hyperbaric oxygen therapy efficacy for any condition other than the indications approved by the FDA. Information within this site is provided for informational and educational purposes only. This information is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by your personal physician or any other medical professional. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, promptly contact your health care provider.

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