Hyperbaric Oxygen Shows No Effect For Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Two People Reviewing Tablet

At least 80% of all traumatic brain injuries are classified as mild. Following a mild traumatic brain injury, around 15% of people will experience post-concussion syndrome, a set of symptoms including depression, anxiety, insomnia, headache, and dizziness. Veterans who have experienced mild traumatic brain injury as a result of exposure to blast show an even higher rate of post-concussion syndrome.

Treatment for post-concussion syndrome is currently limited to treating the symptoms, and not the cause of the problem. Hyperbaric oxygen, which has shown some efficacy in the treatment of moderate and severe traumatic brain injury has been proposed as a potential treatment for post-concussion syndrome related to mild traumatic brain injury.

However, a recent study of hyperbaric oxygen for people with post concussion syndrome showed that it had no beneficial effect. People who are suffering prolonged complications after a mild traumatic brain injury should therefore approach this treatment with caution.

Wolf G, Cifu D, Baugh L, Carne W, & Profenna L. The effect of hyperbaric oxygen on symptoms after mild traumatic brain injury. Journal of Neurotrauma. (November 2012).