HyperbaricLink.com and O2.0 congratulate the Undersea & Hyperbaric Medical Society for holding its first plenary session dedicated to "Off-Label" Indications for HBO2 Treatment. The Society has shaped clinical practice and financial reimbursement for HBOT by keeping an iron grip on its 13 "approved" indications, adding just one to the list since 1976.
We were especially taken with Dr Dan Rossignol's autism presentation. Esteemed steward of the HBOT evidence Dr Michael Bennett agreed Rossignol's study was "terribly exciting and important" but needed replication. Bennett's quick take on other neurologic indications for HBOT ranged from "disproven" for multiple sclerosis to "unlikely" for cerebral palsy.
Proper blinding of hyperbaric clinical trials, as explained by Dick Clarke, proved a more difficult and subtle issue than we could have imagined. But it was Dr Jayesh Shah's provocative consideration of off-label ethics that really stirred things up and kept the Q&A going through lunchtime.
Perhaps minds are opening and times are changing. The UHMS moderator caught the true spirit of the session when he said, "If we don't provide leadership, who will?"