Cerebral ischemia is a common thread of acute cerebral lesions, whether vascular or traumatic origin. Hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) improves tissue oxygenation and may prevent impairment of reversible lesions. In experimental models of cerebral ischemia or traumatic brain injury, HBO has neuroprotective effects which are related to various mechanisms such as modulation of oxidative stress, neuro-inflammation or cerebral and mitochondrial metabolism. However, results of clinical trials failed to prove any neuroprotective effects for cerebral ischemia and remained to be confirmed for traumatic brain injury despite preliminary encouraging results. The addition of inert gases to HBO sessions, especially argon or xenon which show neuroprotective experimental effects, may provide an additional improvement of cerebral lesions. Further multicentric studies with a strict methodology and a better targeted definition are required before drawing definitive conclusions about the efficiency of combined therapy with HBO and inert gases in acute cerebral lesions.
Chhor, Canini, De Rudnicki, Dahmani, Gressens, Constantin, , , (2013). [Hyperbaric oxygen therapy and inert gases in cerebral ischemia and traumatic brain injury]. Annales francaises d’anesthesie et de reanimation, 2013 Dec;32(12):863-71. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24169200