Moscow hospital uses hyperbaric oxygenation to treat COVID-19 patients

© Vladimir Gerdo/TASS

The therapy aims to avoid artificial lung ventilation, according the hospital director.

Moscow’s Research Institute of Emergency Care (Sklifosovsky Institute) has begun experiments to use hyperbaric oxygenation therapy (HBOT) to treat COVID-19 patients, the Moscow mayor’s website said on Friday.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy involves breathing pure oxygen in a pressurized room or tube. This method is more effective than breathing oxygen through a mask or high-flow oxygen therapy (HFOT, another method of non-invasive respiratory support). Other clinics also use normobaric oxygenation therapy (NBOT). The effectiveness of hyperbaric oxygen therapy has turned out far higher though.

"The HBOT is used to treat COVID-19 patients with corresponding indications. The purpose of this therapy is to try to avoid putting the patient on lung ventilation. The HBOT is combined with other treatment techniques," Sklifosovsky Institute Director Sergei Petrikov, a member of the clinical committee for struggle against the novel coronavirus infection, is quoted as saying.

In Moscow, this method is used for the treatment of inflammations, virus diseases, rehabilitation after brain strokes, and vascular diseases.

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