How is Hyperbaric Oxygenation Treatment applied in oncology?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cancer is a disease characterized by a process of uncontrolled growth and spread of cells. It can appear anywhere on the body. The tumor can invade the tissue around the affected area and cause metastasis at distant parts of the body.

  • Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Just in 2012, 8.2 million deaths were attributed to it.
  • The cancers that cause the greatest annual number of deaths are those of the lung, liver, stomach, colon and breast.
  • The most frequent types of cancer are different in men and women.
  • Approximately 30% of cancer deaths are due to five behavioral and dietary risk factors (high body mass index, insufficient consumption of fruits and vegetables, lack of physical activity and consumption of tobacco and alcohol) and, therefore, , they can be prevented.
  • Infections that can cause cancer, such as those caused by hepatitis B and C viruses and the human papilloma virus, are responsible for 20% of cancer deaths in low and middle income countries and 7% in high income countries.
  • Smoking is the risk factor that alone causes a greater number of cases and globally causes approximately 22% of deaths from cancer and 71% of deaths from lung cancer.
  • Cancer begins with the transformation of a single cell, which may have its origin in external agents and inherited genetic factors.
  • 70% of all cancer deaths in 2012 occurred in Africa, Asia, Central and South America. It is anticipated that annual cancer cases will increase from 14 million in 2012 to 22 in the next two decades.

Prevention can reduce the chances of cancer. Proper diagnosis of cancer is essential to prescribe an effective treatment. Each type of cancer requires a specific protocol that may include surgery, radiotherapy or chemotherapy. The first step is to determine the goals of treatment or palliative care, which can focus on curing the cancer or prolonging the patient’s life as much as possible. Another important objective is to improve the quality of life of the patient.

How is the hyperbaric chamber applied in oncology?

Although Hyperbaric Oxygenation Treatment does not cure cancer, the strong hyperoxia generated by the hyperbaric chamber brings oxygen to all tissues of the body including the tumors. This decreases its growth and favors its retraction.

There is a lot of information on these topics and scientific works in which this treatment is complemented with the usual oncology. Also in cases in which radiotherapy is applied, oxygenation in a hyperbaric chamber is indicated by international organizations for the recovery of injuries caused by lightning.


World Health Organization



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