The National Institute of Health defines Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) as a form of acquired brain injury that occurs when a sudden trauma causes damage to the brain. TBI can result when the head suddenly and violently hits an object, or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue. Symptoms of a TBI can be mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the extent of the damage to the brain. A person with a mild TBI may remain conscious or may experience a loss of consciousness for a few seconds or minutes. Other symptoms of mild TBI include headache, confusion, lightheadedness, dizziness, blurred vision or tired eyes, ringing in the ears, bad taste in the mouth, fatigue or lethargy, a change in sleep patterns, behavioral or mood changes, and trouble with memory, concentration, attention, or thinking. A person with a moderate or severe TBI may show these same symptoms, but may also have a headache that gets worse or does not go away, repeated vomiting or nausea, convulsions or seizures, an inability to awaken from sleep, dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes, slurred speech, weakness or numbness in the extremities, loss of coordination, and increased confusion, restlessness, or agitation.
The Department of Veteran’s Affairs has approved the use Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for veterans with persistent symptoms of PTSD. This initial approval is what is referred to as “off label”, in that it has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but according to the VA it can be utilized under the supervision of a trained physician like Dr. Manchikes at Integrated Pain Management.
The initial trials on which this approval is based, showed that veterans with persistent symptoms experienced substantial relief and improvement following HBOT. Many of the participants had given up on more traditional therapy because they just didn’t feel any tangible improvement but these same patients reported measurable positive improvements following HBOT treatment.
The Department of Veteran’s Affairs has given full approval for the use of Hyperbaric Treatment for chronic wound care and radiation burns, so the application of HBOT for PTSD was not received with the skepticism that sometimes is associated with new and novel treatments for psychologically based conditions. As Dr. David J. Shulkin, VA Secretary said “There is nothing more important to us than caring for our nation’s veterans and we will aggressively pursue any treatment or approach that works for them.”
If you are and Veteran and suffering from symptoms of PTSD give Integrated Pain Management a call and see if Dr. Manchikes with his extensive medical experience and expertise in the capabilities of HBOT therapy can help you.
Concussions are the result of mild brain injury generally associated with a blow to the head or a shaking or jarring of the body that results in the brain impacting the inside of the skull. Symptoms include headache, dizziness, altered or impaired executive function and memory, depression and anxiety.
Great strides are being made toward gaining FDA approval of HBOT to treat TBI and Concussion. The Department of Defense has, and continues to sponsor extensive studies to this end. HBOT has been shown to be neuroprotective in multiple neurological disorders and evidence is mounting for the use of HBOT in ameliorating symptoms and improving overall functional capacity following a brain injury event.