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Neurol Res. 2012 Dec;34(10):931-6. doi: 10.1179/1743132812Y.0000000091. Epub 2012 Aug 29.

Hyperbaric oxygen is effective in early stage of healing of experimental brain abscess in rats.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, University Hospital Center Split, Croatia.



Current therapy of brain abscess (BA) includes a combined approach that involves antibiotics and minimal invasive surgery, but also hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT) as a supportive measure. Optimum treatment is still a matter of significant controversy.


The experiment, previously approved by a relevant ethical committee, involved 80 female Wistar rats. BA was experimentally induced by inoculation of Staphylococcus aureus. The animals were randomized into groups and treated either with antibiotics, HBOT, or with a combination of both.


Beneficial effect of HBOT was evident in groups treated with HBOT or with a combination of antibiotic+HBOT. It was mainly manifested on days three and five of the experiment and was evident as statistically significant increase of a number of newly formed blood vessels, increase in mean vascular density, and smaller abscess necrotic core.


Although the results of the present study should be interpreted cautiously, they suggest that HBOT has an important but limited role in the treatment of BA.

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