Hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT) is used to treat acute and chronic wounds. This systematic review was conducted to summarise and evaluate existing evidence on the costs associated with HBOT in the treatment of wounds. We searched multiple electronic databases in March 2015 for cohort studies and randomised clinical trials (RCTs) that reported on the clinical effectiveness and treatment costs of HBOT in the treatment of acute or chronic wounds. One RCT and three cohort studies reported on economic as well as clinical outcomes. These studies comprised different disorders (ischaemic diabetic foot ulcers, thermal burns, Fournier’s gangrene and necrotising soft tissue infections) and employed different clinical and economic outcome measures. Only the RCT had a good methodological quality. Three of the included studies reported that their primary clinical outcomes (wound healing, hospital stay, complications) improved in the HBOT group. The effects of HBOT on costs were variable. Currently, there is little direct evidence on the cost-effectiveness of HBOT in the treatment of acute and chronic wounds. Although there is some evidence suggesting effectiveness of HBOT, further studies should include economic outcomes in order to make recommendations on the cost-effectiveness of applying HBOT in wound care.
Santema, Stoekenbroek, van Steekelenburg, van Hulst, Koelemay, Ubbink, , , (2015). Economic outcomes in clinical studies assessing hyperbaric oxygen in the treatment of acute and chronic wounds. Diving and hyperbaric medicine, 2015 Dec;45(4):228-34. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26687309