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HBOT and Long Haul COVID

  • 4 min read
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy: A Ray of Hope for Long Haul COVID Recovery
Woman with Long Haul COVID Symptoms

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the world, leaving a trail of suffering and uncertainty in its wake. While many individuals recover from the infection within a few weeks, an alarming number of patients continue to experience persistent and debilitating symptoms long after the acute phase of the illness. This phenomenon, commonly known as Long Haul COVID or Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 Infection (PASC), has become a major healthcare concern.

In recent years, hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) has garnered significant attention as a potential treatment to aid in the recovery of Long Haul COVID patients. HBOT involves breathing levels oxygen higher than normal in a pressurized environment, and numerous studies have explored its benefits in treating various medical conditions. In this blog, we will delve into the scientific evidence supporting the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy for Long Haul COVID patients, the underlying mechanisms of how it helps, and the potential benefits it offers.

Understanding Long Haul COVID

Long Haul COVID is characterized by persistent symptoms that extend beyond the acute phase of the initial infection. Common symptoms include extreme fatigue, shortness of breath, brain fog, muscle weakness, chest pain, and more. These lingering effects can severely impact an individual's quality of life, rendering them unable to resume their normal activities or work responsibilities.

To address Long Haul COVID, researchers and healthcare professionals have been exploring various treatment modalities. One such promising approach is hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

The Mechanism of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is based on the principle of delivering oxygen at higher-than-normal atmospheric pressure. Individuals undergoing HBOT are placed in a pressurized chamber, where they breathe levels of oxygen above 21%. The increased pressure allows the oxygen to dissolve more effectively in the bloodstream, leading to a higher oxygen concentration in the tissues.

This surge of oxygen in the body can produce several beneficial effects, contributing to the potential benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy for Long Haul COVID patients:

1. Enhanced Oxygen Delivery: By saturating the tissues with oxygen, HBOT helps improve oxygen delivery to the organs and tissues affected by the long-lasting effects of COVID-19. This increased oxygen supply aids cellular repair and regeneration.

2. Reduction of Inflammation: Long Haul COVID is often associated with chronic inflammation. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been shown to reduce inflammation in various medical conditions, and it may help dampen the inflammatory response seen in Long Haul COVID patients.

3. Angiogenesis Promotion: HBOT stimulates the formation of new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis. This can enhance blood flow to damaged tissues and promote healing in areas where circulation may be compromised.

4. Immune Modulation: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been demonstrated to modulate the immune system, balancing its response and potentially preventing excessive immune activation that contributes to prolonged symptoms in Long Haul COVID.

Scientific Evidence Supporting HBOT for Long Haul COVID

Several studies have explored the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy as a potential treatment for Long Haul COVID, with promising results. Let's take a look at some of the published research:

1. A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology (July 2021) investigated the effects of HBOT on lung function and exercise capacity in patients with Long Haul COVID. The researchers found that HBOT led to significant improvements in lung function and exercise tolerance, suggesting that it could be a valuable adjunctive therapy for respiratory recovery.

2. Another study, published in Frontiers in Medicine (February 2022), examined the impact of HBOT on neurological symptoms in Long Haul COVID patients. The researchers reported that HBOT was associated with reduced brain fog, improved cognitive function, and a decrease in headaches and dizziness.

3. A comprehensive review of multiple studies conducted by experts in hyperbaric medicine, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (September 2022), analyzed the benefits of HBOT for Long Haul COVID. The review concluded that HBOT showed promise in alleviating various symptoms and improving the overall well-being of patients suffering from Long Haul COVID.


Long Haul COVID is a challenging condition with limited treatment options available. However, hyperbaric oxygen therapy has emerged as a potential game-changer for these patients. With its ability to enhance oxygen delivery, reduce inflammation, promote angiogenesis, and modulate the immune system, HBOT offers hope for the recovery of individuals struggling with persistent symptoms.

It is essential to acknowledge that more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms of hyperbaric oxygen therapy and its optimal application for Long Haul COVID. Individuals seeking HBOT to help with Long Haul COVID should consult their physician beforehand.

As the medical community continues to explore and refine the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy, it is becoming increasingly evident that this innovative treatment may hold the key to improving the lives of Long Haul COVID patients and providing them with a path to recovery. With ongoing research and advancements in medical science, the potential benefits of HBOT in Long Haul COVID management are indeed promising.