How Can I Tell if I am a Candidate for HBOT?


The eligibility of a patient for HBO depends to a large extent upon the seriousness of the illness and the critical need for such therapy. In emergencies, such as gas gangrene or gas embolism, inability to clear the ears can be managed by tympanostomy, and pneumothorax can be handled with a chest tube that is carefully vented during decompression, if a multiplace chamber is used.

Elective patients, such as in osteomyelitis, osteoradionecrosis, burns, wound-healing problems, senility, etc., should be instructed as to the nature of the therapy. Elderly patients should have a pulmonary function test. If significant obstructive pulmonary disease is present it will require very slow rates of decompression, such as one foot per minute or less. The patient should be examined to make certain that the patient can equalize middle ear pressure, Decongestants can be used, and when necessary, polyethylene tubes can be placed in the tympanic membranes for the duration of the treatment.

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