The effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on myocardial function in post-COVID-19 syndrome patients: a randomized controlled trial

Marina Leitman*, Shmuel Fuchs, Vladimir Tyomkin, Amir Hadanny, Shani Zilberman-Itskovich, Shai Efrati

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Post-COVID-19 condition refers to a range of persisting physical, neurocognitive, and neuropsychological symptoms following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Recent evidence revealed that post-COVID-19 syndrome patients may suffer from cardiac dysfunction and are at increased risk for a broad range of cardiovascular disorders. This randomized, sham-control, double-blind trial evaluated the effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) on the cardiac function of post-COVID-19 patients with ongoing symptoms for at least three months after confirmed infection. Sixty patients were randomized to receive 40 daily HBOT or sham sessions. They underwent echocardiography at baseline and 1–3 weeks after the last protocol session. Twenty-nine (48.3%) patients had reduced global longitudinal strain (GLS) at baseline. Of them, 13 (43.3%) and 16 (53.3%) were allocated to the sham and HBOT groups, respectively. Compared to the sham group, GLS significantly increased following HBOT (− 17.8 ± 1.1 to − 20.2 ± 1.0, p = 0.0001), with a significant group-by-time interaction (p = 0.041). In conclusion, post-COVID-19 syndrome patients despite normal EF often have subclinical left ventricular dysfunction that is characterized by mildly reduced GLS. HBOT promotes left ventricular systolic function recovery in patients suffering from post COVID-19 condition. Further studies are needed to optimize patient selection and evaluate long-term outcomes. This study was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT04647656 on 01/12/2020.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9473
JournalScientific Reports
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023

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