Does Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Help? At What Cost?

November 1, 2016   Opinion

New Mobility Magazine | Source

Illustration by Mark Weber

Illustration by Mark Weber

Riley Poor had been on bedrest for months trying to heal a pressure sore. He had grown so accustomed to the nerve pain and spasms he dealt with that they were beginning to seem normal. That’s when his partner, Andrea Peruzzi, suggested he look into hyperbaric oxygen therapy. “All I really knew about it was that Michael Jackson had apparently slept in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber,” he says. “I was a little bit skeptical because there is so much woo-woo type crap out there.”

But feeling like he had tried pretty much everything else and had nothing to lose, Poor, a C5-6 quad who lives in Portland, Oregon, went ahead and signed up for 13 hours in the closest chamber he could find, about 30 minutes north in Vancouver, Washington. “Logistically it was challenging because it was expensive and far away, but once I got on the bandwagon, and as I got to hour nine or 10 of therapy, I started realizing that I had a dramatic reduction in nerve pain and my spasms were so much better,” he recalls. On top of that, the wounds that had refused to heal started to get smaller and soon went away. “It was really bizarre, and it was amazing.”

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