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Alzheimer’s disease-HBOT reduces amyloid plaques and causes large gains in blood flow to the Brain

This exciting new study shows that Hyperbaric Oxygen therapy (HBOT) may REVERSE dementia development by preventing the deposit of new amyloid plaques on the brain cells and even leading to the removal of existing ones! The 2 most common types of dementia are vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). It is now believed that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can effectively help to halt both of these devastating conditions, while also being able to help reverse the cognitive decline seen in the aging process. The production of amyloid plaques are a hallmark of AD, consisting of hard, insoluble accumulations of beta amyloid proteins that clump together between the nerve cells and block their communication. Compounding this, is a reduction in oxygen (hypoxia) and reduction in blood flow to these regions inside the brain. Since the pathophysiology includes both the build up of amyloid plaques and a reduction in cerebral blood flow (CBF), the researchers designed this study to deploy a typical course of HBOT and then observe any changes in both amyloid plaque and CBF, while also documenting any clinical improvements. They did this by presenting a 2-fold study, the first being an animal study which was then followed up with a small human study. Both showed extremely promising results and confirmed previous studies for HBOT’s potential role in treating dementia and memory loss. Initial Animal Study: Mice were exposed to 20 HBOT sessions (2.0 ATA, 60 min) causing a significant:

  • Reduction in amyloid burden (by reducing the volume of pre-existing plaques and attenuating the formation of new ones).

  • Improvement in vascular parameters

  • Improvement in behavior and performance of cognitive-based tasks.

Human follow-up study: Six elderly patients with significant memory loss were treated with 60 HBOT sessions (2.0 ATA, 90 min) and both CBF and cognitive function were evaluated and the results were as follows:

  • Cerbral Blood Flow — Following HBOT, there were significant CBF increases in several brain areas, including 8 Brodmann areas.

  • Cognitive function — Cognitive assessment revealed a significant increase in the global cognitive score, where memory, attention and information processing speed domain scores showed most benefits. The improvements in these scores correlated with improved short and working memory.

This study, along with previous studies by these authors, demonstrates that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can be deployed at any stage of the dementia process, from early on with mild cognitive impairment, to advanced stages seen in Alzheimer's. disease.

Published Study

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