What is TBI?
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is sudden damage to the brain caused by a blow or jolt to the head. Common causes include road accidents, falls, concussions and sports injuries. Mild cases of TBI affect the brain temporarily. More serious injuries can lead to long-term health complications such as difficulty thinking and remembering, loss of motor skills, sleep disruption, chronic fatigue, chronic pain, and more.
TBI damages the brain by disrupting or restricting blood flow to certain brain regions, which impacts their ability to function properly. We know that the brain needs an adequate supply of oxygen to repair damage – and that’s where Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy comes in.
More about Post Concussion Syndrome (PCS)Read More
What is Post-Concussion Syndrome?
When the symptoms of a concussion or traumatic brain injury (TBI) persist past the point of normal recovery — one to two months — the condition is known as post-concussion syndrome (PCS). This chronic condition results from micro damage to the small blood vessels and nerves in the brain.
PCS can cause multiple physical, emotional, and cognitive symptoms that can persist for years if not properly diagnosed.
Chronic Symptoms of PCS:
Not all PCS patients experience the same chronic symptoms, and different symptoms may present at different times.
Common symptoms of PCS include: dizziness, headaches, nausea, sensitivity to light and noise, fatigue, trouble falling asleep, short-term memory loss, forgetfulness, lack of focus, irrational anger and anxiety.
If left untreated, PCS can exacerbate mental health issues, increase psychiatric hospitalization, and cause self-harm.
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help TBI
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is a common treatment for medical conditions associated with a lack of oxygen, and research shows that it can help with the healing of brain injuries.
At Aviv, we first diagnose the severity of the brain injury with physical and neurological tests to assess suitability for HBOT treatment. We then advise on a HBOT treatment plan.
HBOT involves breathing 100% pure oxygen in a special room known as a HBOT suite. This, combined with the elevated pressure in the suite increases the amount of oxygen in the blood several fold, which helps damaged tissue regenerate and heal faster.
The Aviv Medical Program combines two processes that help TBI patients. First, we increase the oxygen levels in the body, giving your brain an energy boost. Then, we fluctuate the level of oxygen. This variation in oxygen supply triggers the body’s natural process of regeneration.
Watch Remarkable Recovery Stories
Groundbreaking clinical trial shows remarkable results for kids with TBI
A new study published in Scientific Reports shows that the protocol used by Aviv Clinics is a highly effective treatment for healing damaged brain tissue and relieving ongoing post-concussion symptoms.
The study found that participants in the treatment group experienced a significant increase in cognitive function. This included an improvement in their general cognitive score, improvement in memory, and executive function, following the HBOT treatment. Additional improvements included a positive change in brain structure, and an enhanced emotional score covering issues such as anxiety, depression and more.
Proven benefits of HBOT for TBI patients
Benefits for your mind:
- Rejuvenation of injured brain tissue, restoring some or all of the functions impacted by the damaged tissue.
- Increased blood flow in the parts of the brain associated with sensation, memory, vision, and attention, leading to better memory function, attention span, executive function, and faster information processing speed.
- Significant increase in blood flow to the brain (brain perfusion) and the generation of new blood vessels in the brain (angiogenesis).
- Improved psychomotor function (the combination of precise motor responses and cognitive problem-solving abilities).
- Improved NIHSS (neurological motor function score), ADL (activities of daily life score), and EQ-5D (quality of life score).
- HBOT triggers neuroplasticity – the brain’s ability to adapt/react in response to injury or disease.
- HBOT reactivates and triggers neurogenesis – neuronal (nerve cell) regeneration that occurs in the brain.
- Clinical improvements regardless of the severity of the TBI.
- Improved quality of life overall.
Benefits for your body:
- Better physical performance: Fitness, Strength, Coordination, Balance
- Boost energy, power and stamina
- Reduce pain (strong anti-inflammatory effect)
- Sleep better
Benefits for your cells:
- Strengthen your immune system
- Encourage stem cells – the building blocks of tissue rejuvenation – to multiply and migrate
- Lengthen the telomeres – the protective caps at the end of each strand of DNA. Encouraging telomeres to lengthen is associated with extending our biological clock
- Reduce senescent cells – known to contribute to many age-related diseases
- Increase mitochondrial function – the power plant in each of our cells
Post-Concussion Syndrome (PCS) may occur after a TBI
Continual symptoms of concussions weeks after a TBIs are a clear sign that your brain has not healed and additional treatment is needed.
To assess if you’re dealing with post-concussion syndrome (PCS), Aviv physicians will perform advanced MRI scans, SPECT scans, and both neurocognitive and neurological tests to diagnose this condition, as well as review your health and concussion history and conduct a physical exam.
“HBOT can be successful because it addresses the cause of the symptoms, not just the symptoms alone. In combination with cognitive, physical, and nutritional coaching, some HBOT protocols can be very effective.” — Dr. Mohammed Elamir, MD, FACP
If you or a loved one has suffered from a traumatic brain injury or concussion, we may be able to help.
The Aviv Medical Program: How it works
At Aviv, we treat TBI using a specific research based HBOT protocol. The Aviv Medical Protocol is based on over a decade of research at Shamir Medical Center with proven clinical results.
Our program includes:
In-depth medical assessment
A comprehensive three-day medical, physiological, and mental assessment carried out by Aviv certified medical staff including physicians, neuropsychologists, physiotherapists, physiologists and nurses. This includes the most advanced brain imaging tests suited to your needs, such as perfusion MRI, fMRI and SPECT.
A unique treatment including HBOT protocol
You’ll have HBOT sessions five days a week for 12 weeks – 60 consecutive two-hour sessions in total. Alongside your HBOT sessions, you’ll receive personalized brain training and physical training designed to maximize the effects of the oxygen treatments.
At the end of your treatment, we repeat the tests from the initial assessment to measure results and make recommendations for your ongoing progress. We’ll give you a comprehensive medical report summarizing all of the changes that occurred throughout your treatment, supervised and signed by your professional healthcare team led by our Chief Medical Doctor.
TBI and HBOT:
Clear, proven research
- Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, Traumatic Encephalopathy Syndrome, Post-Concussion Syndrome, and the Therapeutic Potential of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy: A Comprehensive Case Study and Discussion
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy in children with post-concussion syndrome improves cognitive and behavioral function: a randomized controlled trial
Scientific Reports volume 12, Article number: 15233 (September 2022)
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Can Improve Post Concussion Syndrome Years after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury – Randomized Prospective Trial
PLoS One 8, no. 11 (2013): e79995.
Effect of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy on Chronic Neurocognitive Deficits of Post-Traumatic Brain Injury Patients: Retrospective Analysis
BMJ Open 8, no. 9 (Sep 28 2018): e023387.
Speak with an Aviv team member to learn if you’re a candidate for the program.