During the first 24 h, a progression of the burn wound in histological depth or extension is often noted. This can only partially be prevented by the routinely used protocols of fluid resuscitation and burn wound dressing. In a rat model of 5% TBSA burn, hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) and piracetam were evaluated for their ability to further prevent this early deepening of the burn wound. After infliction of the burn wound, the animals were treated with an accepted basic burn wound treatment consisting of mafenide 10% solution humid dressings. They were then randomized into three groups: a control group (n = 10), receiving no other treatment, a HBOT group (n = 17), receiving 60 min of HBOT (203 kPa) twice daily, and a piracetam group (n = 19), receiving piracetam (200 mg/kg IM) twice daily. On the third day of treatment, the entire burn wound was exised and examined histologically. It was found that both HBOT and piracetam had statistically significant effects on the preservation of epidermal basal membrane (P < 0.001 and P < 0.01, respectively). HBOT, but not piracetam, further had significant effects on the destruction of skin appendages (P < or = 0.05 and P > 0.05, respectively) and on the degree of subepidermal inflammation, as measured by leucocyte infiltration (P < 0.001 and P > 0.05, respectively). Furthermore, the HBOT group showed significantly less leucocyte infiltration than the piracetam group (P < 0.01). It was concluded that, although the clinical importance of the small effects on skin appendage and basal membrane preservation may be questionable, the effect on subepidermal leucocyte infiltration is striking and warrants further investigation of the anti-inflammatory effects of HBOT and possibly piracetam. Germonpré, Reper, Vanderkelen, , , , , , (1996). Hyperbaric oxygen therapy and piracetam decrease the early extension of deep partial-thickness burns. Burns : journal of the International Society for Burn Injuries, 1996 Sep;22(6):468-73. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8884008