UnityPoint Health - St. Luke's Hospital

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Those who may be experiencing the side effect of tissue degradation due to the latent effect of radiation therapy may be referred for a hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) consult. However, ninety percent of patients do not require HBOT. It is used for more advanced and complicated wounds.

HBOT is administered in hyperbaric chambers with pressurized oxygen up to three atmospheres, similar to the pressure experienced by a scuba diver at 33 feet below the surface. However, the pressure felt by the patient resembles the changes felt by passengers in an airplane rather than the pressure felt by divers.

While inside the chamber, patients breathe pure oxygen, which saturates the plasma in their blood. This helps the body's oxygen-dependent, wound-healing mechanisms to function more efficiently. When the body is exposed to pressurized oxygen over a prescribed period, new blood vessels grow and replace damaged blood vessels. The restored blood flow aids healing.

To find out if you would benefit from services at St. Luke's Wound and Hyperbaric Center, call 319/368-5582.