FARGO, ND (Valley News Live) – For those who can’t get rid of the difficult symptoms associated with COVID-19, help may be there. A local doctor said he may have the answer long-haulers have been looking for, and it’s a treatment widely used on divers with decompression sickness.
“I have yet to see anyone who says it hasn’t improved their COVID symptoms. Said Dr Allan Luistro.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a treatment used to speed healing for a number of FDA approved indications. Dr Luistro said the treatment could help long-haul COVID-19. During treatment, the patient is placed in a chamber and exposed to 100% oxygen with increased pressure for one hour.
“The high levels of oxygen will decrease or stop the body’s inflammatory response which allows tissues to heal.” said Dr Luistro.
He said that for a long-haul COVID-19 undergoing hyperbaric oxygen therapy, their inflammation would decrease and the patient could see improvement in their long-lasting COVID-19 symptoms.
“Permanent fatigue, brain fog, problems concentrating, loss of taste and smell, shortness of breath. These are probably the main ones patients have come for. Said Dr Luistro.
However, COVID-19 is not an FDA approved indication for treatment and would not be covered by insurance.
The patient would have to pay $ 250 out of pocket per treatment. On average, he said his long-haul COVID-19 patients experience ten.
“COVID .. It’s reasonable to try to see if there is a benefit.” said Dr Luistro
He said he hopes more internationally accepted indications, such as traumatic brain injury and concussion, will be approved by the FDA so that more people can access the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
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