Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for delayed onset muscle soreness and closed soft tissue injury

Source:
NICE Quality and Productivity Case Studies
Publisher:
Queen's University Belfast
Publication date:
27 October 2011

Abstract

NICE summary of review conclusions

Evidence shows that the harms of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on ankle sprain or acute knee ligament injury, or on experimentally induced delayed-onset muscle soreness may outweigh the benefits.

Reducing or stopping the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in delayed-onset muscle soreness, ankle sprain and acute knee ligament injury is likely to improve the quality of patient care and result in productivity savings by reducing exposure to unproven therapies for conditions for which less costly alternative interventions exist.

The Implications for practice section of the Cochrane review stated:

There was insufficient evidence from comparisons tested within randomised controlled trials to establish the effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on ankle sprain or acute knee ligament injury, or on experimentally induced delayed-onset muscle soreness. There was some evidence that hyperbaric oxygen therapy may increase pain in delayed-onset muscle soreness. Thus, the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in these patients cannot be justified by this review.