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oxygen therapy

26

MAY / JUN 2015

I 

Healthcare Journal of new orleans  

What The Research Found

Dr. Harch has seen significant changes as a

result of the HBOT. The average change in

participants’ IQ was 14 points. On average,

participants improved a full standard devia-

tion in delayedmemory and two-thirds of a

standard deviation in workingmemory and

attention.

Eight of the 13 cognitive tests had

extremely strong statistically significant

changes, and all eight of the emotional mea-

sures, such as effects on depression, anxi-

ety, quality of life, and so on, had highly sta-

tistically significant improvements as well.

Participants also experienced a significant

reduction in suicidal ideation and were able

to decrease the dosage or discontinue their

psychoactive medication.

Dr. Harch also compared the participants’

brain blood flow (SPECT) scan results to

SPECT scan results from a previous LSU

study on healthy, normal people. Initially,

the brain-injured participants’SPECT scans

were statistically, significantly abnormal

compared to the SPECT scans of those in

the earlier study. However, after HBOT, the

two groups became nearly indistinguishable.

Brain blood flowhad almost completely been

normalized in a widespreadmanner in addi-

tion to the improvements in cognitive scores.

These results are in concordancewith pre-

vious HBOT studies, andDr. Harch feels they

bear significant weight on the future of TBI

medicine. He is also currently conducting

another HBOT study for which he is actively

seeking participants who have experienced

traumatic brain injury at least sixmonths to

ten years ago (

www.hbottbistudy.org

).

“The research affects one of the most

common conditions that we have in soci-

ety,”said Dr. Harch. “TBI is one of the biggest

health problems, one of the biggest drivers of

healthcare costs, and one of the biggest con-

tributors to long-term disability and unem-

ployment, substance abuse, homelessness,

even criminal activity.”

He continued, “A therapy that stops the

injury process very early on if rendered soon

after the TBI, or that can help long-termdys-

functional patients by helping to ameliorate

their symptoms andmake themmore func-

tional, could potentially have a huge impact.

This just has tremendous importance and

application to society. I believe it’s going

to revolutionize the fields of medicine and

neurology.”

Future Applications

of Hyperbaric Oxygen

While HBOT has shown positive results for

wound repair and now TBI and PTSD, Dr.

Harch does not plan to stop there.

In his book, The Oxygen Revolution, Dr.

Harch tells the story of his mother, who

developed severe dementia in her old age

and was not given long to live. However,

after hyperbaric oxygen treatments, many

of her physical, mental, and emotional fac-

ulties improved, and her life was extended

by several years.

Dr. Harch is driven to replicate those

results in other cognitively impaired patients

and is currently designing studies to research

treatments for various groups, but he has still

more in store for exciting potential uses for

hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

“In addition, I’mgoing to apply this to can-

cer,”saidDr. Harch. “We have evidence that in

conjunction with other agents that we have

identified as tumoricidal, we can combine

themwith hyperbaric oxygen.”

Dr. Harchwill discuss these treatments and

more in the upcoming update to his book.

While New Orleans may not be as well

known formedical research contributions as

other parts of the country, Dr. Harch believes

that tidemay turnwith the discovery of new

utilities for hyperbaric oxygen therapies.

“I firmly believe this is going to lead the

country and revolutionize medicine in its

applications,” said Dr. Harch. “And it all

started, or I should say really blossomed,

right here.” 

n

“In addition, I’m going to apply

this to cancer. We have evidence

that in conjunction with other

agents that we have identified

as tumoricidal, we can combine

them with hyperbaric oxygen.”

Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen discovers x-rays

and creates an image of his wife’s hand.

1817

British physiologist Marshall

Hall publishes On Diagnosis.

c. 1850

Lab tests are developed for common diseases

such as tuberculosis, cholera, typhoid,

diphtheria, though the cures lag far behind.

1895

e