Oxygen is easy to miss and take for granted. It is a colorless gas that exists all around us, making up about 21 percent of the Earth’s atmosphere. Oxygen is the third most abundant element in the world, and it is a necessary component of life.
Oxygen and cancer may not seem to have any real relationship, but they may actually be more connected than you think. Read on to learn more about oxygen therapy for cancer.
What is Oxygen Therapy?
Oxygen therapy is an umbrella term that refers to several forms of medical treatment that are designed to introduce into the body, specifically to flood tumors and cancer cells. It is well-known and studied that normal human cells need just the right amount of oxygen to survive and thrive. Mechanisms within the body regulate how much oxygen your cells get, which ensures that your cells adapt and get enough oxygen when you change altitudes or perform aerobic exercises.
The relationship between oxygen and cancer cells is complicated, but cancer cells are often starved of oxygen. Studies on human and mouse breast cancer cells suggest that tumor cells can actually use this to their advantage. When exposed to low oxygen levels, tumor cells had a higher chance of survival that also promoted their ability to spread within the bloodstream.
Through oxygen therapy, doctors may be able to kill a cancer cell and control or reduce tumor cell proliferation. Introducing oxygen to cancer cells may also increase their sensitivity to other forms of treatment, like chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
Incorporating more oxygen into the body may also have other effects that can promote healing. This includes:
- A decrease in inflammation and swelling
- The growth of new blood vessels
- Immune system support
- Improved rate of healing
Types of Oxygen Therapy for Cancer Treatment
There are several types of Oxygen therapy that range from oral medication to medication directly injected into the tumor to increase oxygen retrieval. Some forms of oxygen therapy you may encounter include:
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
Also known as HBOT, This oxygen therapy includes staying inside a pressurized hyperbaric oxygen chamber and breathing in pure oxygen (O2). The hyperbaric oxygen treatment can help improve the results of cancer treatment and heal side effects like radiation necrosis caused by radiation therapy.
Supplemental Oxygen Therapy
People in the late stages of cancer can sometimes have low oxygen. Supplemental oxygen therapy can help alleviate that. Additionally, this treatment can increase the survival rate of the patient. This can both be administered at the hospital or in the comforts of the home.
What is ozone therapy? It is a type of oxygen treatment that uses the ozone (O3) to increase the amount of oxygen in the body which could help stop tumor growth. Here are some of the therapies.
Ozone UVB therapy is a unique ozone therapy that combines the power of the sun with your own blood. Your blood is extracted and exposed to ultraviolet light, which is believed to oxygenate the blood via ozone (comprised of three oxygen atoms). The “oxygenated” blood is then reinjected back into your body, which may help to increase oxygen levels and slow down cancer growth.
Similar to ozone UVB therapy, ozone autohemotherapy uses your own blood to support oxygenation. Your blood is extracted and injected directly with ozone before getting reintroduced back into your body.
Ozone Rectal Insufflation
Unlike HBOT treatments where you enter a pressurized chamber, with ozone rectal insufflation, a clinician injects ozone directly into the rectum. The walls of the rectum are extremely sensitive and porous. Theories suggest that the walls of the rectum can more readily absorb oxygen. This may allow for greater efficiency and thus more significant results.
More research and trials are necessary to fully understand the potential effects and benefits of oxygen therapy for cancer. The current research is promising, and administered properly, oxygen therapy leaves room for a non-invasive cancer treatment.
At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.