William A. Zamboni, M.D., FACS and Himansu R. Shah, M.D.
Hyperbaric oxygen (HBO2) therapy is neither necessary nor recommended for the support of normal, uncompromised skin grafts and flaps. However, in tissue compromised by irradiation or other cases where there is decreased perfusion or hypoxia, HBO2 has been shown to be extremely useful in flap salvage. Hyperbaric oxygen can help maximize the viability of the compromised tissue thereby reducing the need for regrafting or repeat flap procedures. A number of studies have shown the efficacy of HBO2 on enhancement of flap and graft survival in a variety of experimental and clinical situations.1
1 Hyperbaric Oxygen 2003: Indications and Results, The Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Committee Report by John J. Feldmeier, D.O., Chairman and Editor. Copyright 2003, Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society, Inc., Kensington, MD.