September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

For cancer patients suffering from post-radiation damage, hyperbaric oxygen therapy can bring relief

Many patients diagnosed with cancer undergo radiation treatment, which is quite effective in killing cancer cells but can also cause long-term damage to healthy cells and tissues. For survivors of prostate cancer, bladder cancer, or cancers of the bowel or reproductive system, radiation treatments can result in bleeding in the bladder or other nearby organs. This can begin months to sometimes years after treatment is completed. Severe episodes may even cause anemia and hospitalization requiring blood transfusions. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) has been proven to be an effective treatment in resolving urinary and bowel bleeding associated with the late effects of radiation therapy. Many cancer survivors who had lost hope of recovering from the side effects of radiation therapy are now experiencing an improved quality of life because of HBOT.

What is HBOT?

Wounds need oxygen and nutrients from the blood in order to heal. During HBOT treatment, patients are given 100 percent oxygen in a pressurized, sealed chamber in order to oxygenate the blood and tissues and speed the healing process. This extra oxygen helps to fight off bacteria, reduce inflammation and stimulate angiogenesis, which allows the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the body’s tissues.

HBOT usually spans multiple sessions lasting approximately 90-120 minutes each. Sessions are overseen by specialized clinical staff with advanced training and expertise in hyperbaric medicine.

HBOT is also routinely used for individuals in need of treatment for conditions like diabetic ulcers of the lower extremities, advanced infections such as chronic osteomyelitis, compromised skin flaps, and grafts, osteoradionecrosis, and at times, other more emergent conditions.

If you or someone you love is suffering after undergoing radiation treatment for prostate or bladder cancer, ask your physician about HBOT. Medicare, Medicaid, and most insurance companies cover hyperbaric therapy for these conditions. For more information, contact Covenant Wound Healing & Hyperbaric Medicine Center at 989.583.4401.

Posted Date: 9/15/2022

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