Hyperbaric oxygen therapy was effective, safe and well tolerated in hospitalized patients with ulcerative colitis experiencing moderate-to-severe disease flares, according to data from a randomized, double blind, sham-controlled trial presented at the 12th Congress of the European Crohn’s and Colitis Organization.
As dysregulated tissue hypoxia response plays a key role in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis, and because hospitalized UC patients often require a second-line therapy, such as colectomy or biologics, for non-response to steroids, Corey Siegel, MD, MS, director of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center in New Hampshire, Parambir Dulai, MD, a research fellow at University of California San Diego, and colleagues sought to evaluate the therapeutic potential of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in this setting.
“This project potentially has huge clinical significance,” Siegel said. “Although we have made great advances for the treatment of [UC], there is still a high rate of morbidity for hospitalized patients with UC. We need more effective and safer options for this patient population. If we are right about the efficacy and safety of hyperbaric oxygen for UC, this could change the treatment paradigm for these patients. We are currently starting a follow-up study to further define the optimal treatment regimen, with plans for a large randomized trial in the near future.” – by Adam Leitenberger
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