The effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on diabetic retinopathy: A preliminary study


Main idea: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy may improve diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema. This therapy may serve as an adjunctive treatment in the management of retinal ischemia and capillary hyperpermeability in diabetic retinopathy.


The objective of this study was to prospectively assess the effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on diabetic retinopathy lesions and macular edema in patients undergoing the treatment for diabetic foot ulcers.

Two groups were compared: a first group including 25 patients with non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy treated by hyperbaric oxygen therapy for foot ulcers, and a control group composed of 25 patients with diabetic retinopathy who did not receive hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The hyperbaric oxygen therapy protocol performed for the patients in the first group was: 30 sessions of 90 minutes each at 2.5 ATA with a mean frequency of five sessions per week. All patients had an ophthalmological exam at baseline (visual acuity, intraocular pressure, fundus exam), fundus photography. A follow-up exam was performed at the conclusion of the hyperbaric oxygen therapy.Compared to the control group, patients treated with hyperbaric oxygen therapy showed a regression or stabilization of diabetic retinopathy lesions and a decrease in central macular thickness (CMT).


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