Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a powerful, science-backed medical technology can be used to treat chronic fatigue, fix erectile dysfunction, heal brain injuries, and potentially double the speed of your recovery from exercise and other kinds of stressors.
This weeks guest, Scott Sherr MD, is a hyperbaric optimization therapy and health optimization medicine (HOMe) doctor. He has devoted his work to help people optimize their health through the use of HBOT. Today, he will share some of the amazing benefits of using hyperbaric oxygen therapy to optimize your health and overcome fatigue.
Even if you don’t have access to a hyperbaric chamber (most of you probably don’t), I think you’ll find this information absolutely fascinating.
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to Overcome Chronic Fatigue, Recover Twice as Fast, Fix Erectile Dysfunction, Heal Brain Injuries and More with Scott Sherr MD – Transcript
- What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy?
- How hyperbaric oxygen therapy was first discovered
- Where to experience hyperbaric oxygen pressure in nature
- The difference between a hyperbaric session and pressurized air
- How to recover twice as fast
- How hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a form of hormesis
- How hyperbaric oxygen therapy can reverse erectile dysfunction
- How oxidative stress affects the body
- The difference between soft and hard chambers
- How hidden infections can affect recovery time
- How to adapt treatment to your condition
- Which treatments hyperbaric oxygen therapy works for
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to Overcome Chronic Fatigue, Recover Twice as Fast, Fix Erectile Dysfunction, Heal Brain Injuries and More with Scott Sherr MD – Show Notes
In this podcast, we’ll cover
- What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy? – How it was first discovered (the story might surprise you)
- The difference between soft and hard chambers and how to find out which one is best for you
- How to use HBOT to double the speed of post-workout recovery
- The places in the world where you can experience HBOT in nature
- How HBOT can contribute to recovery from brain injuries
- Can HBOT cure cancer? How hyperbaric oxygen therapy can have a regressive effect on certain types of cancer (how it can reverse and heal radiation injury sustained during cancer treatment)
- Why 20,000 people in Israel are on a waiting list to receive hyperbaric oxygen therapy (this is especially important to men, but women will benefit from it too)
- Why HBOT treatment for diabetics with ulcers is invaluable (and it is covered by health insurance)
- Why hidden infections can hinder recovery (Scott’s recommendation for treating infections with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy)
- Note: Some of you might have noticed that Scott is a part of HOMe, where he works with Ted Achacoso, MD (whom I have had the pleasure of having as a guest on the podcast twice) on changing the world in terms of how medicine is practiced. (If you haven’t already listened to the podcasts with Dr. Achacoso, I would strongly recommend that you go listen to them. You can find the links at the bottom of this page.)
- How HBOT is being used to help people with PTSD
- How to adapt hyperbaric oxygen treatment to your needs
- Concussions or traumatic brain injury? HBOT can help
Download or listen on iTunes
Listen outside of iTunes
Note: Some of you might have noticed that Scott is a part of HOMe, where he works with Ted Achacoso, MD (whom I have had the pleasure of having as a guest on the podcast twice) on changing the world in terms of how medicine is practiced. (If you haven’t already listened to the podcasts with Dr. Achacoso, I would strongly recommend that you go listen to them. You can find the links at the bottom of this page.)
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to Overcome Chronic Fatigue, Recover Twice as Fast, Fix Erectile Dysfunction, Heal Brain Injuries and More with Scott Sherr MD – Transcript
Ari Whitten: Hey everyone, welcome back to the Energy Blueprint podcast, I am your host, Ari Whitten, and today I have with me a friend of mine who I met just a few weeks ago and I had some great conversations with. He’s an MD, and his name is Dr. Scott Sherr. He is a board-certified internal medicine physician, specializing in health optimization medicine and hyperbaric oxygen therapy. We actually met at the inaugural health optimization event conference-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes, we did.
Ari Whitten: And he is the founding organizer of health optimization medicine in the USA, which is a new paradigm of wellness medicine drawn from the current specialties of anti-aging medicine, nutritional medicine, longevity medicine, regenerative medicine, age management medicine, sports medicine, and rejuvenative medicine. That is a lot of medicine.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: It’s cool. It’s just cool, it’s good, it’s fun.
Ari Whitten: So [inaudible] bridge conventional and alternative medicine through both physician and practitioner training as well as by providing a turnkey practice platform. So welcome Dr. Sherr Scott. Can I call you Scott?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Please. All right, nice.
Ari Whitten: Cool.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: And you can just say that I’m internal medicine doc, I’m a hyperbaric oxygen therapy doc, and I’m a health optimization medicine doctor. That’s it.
Ari Whitten: There’s a lot less medicines in that bio.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, I just try to … I could’ve made it more simple.
Ari Whitten: Cool, well, it’s a pleasure to have you, and on a personal note, it was great to connect with you in person and fun to have conversations with you in person.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: [crosstalk] to meet, yeah?
Ari Whitten: Yeah.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: A lot about [crosstalk].
What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy?
Ari Whitten: So this podcast is gonna be all about hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Now, just to get us started with a very broad questions, since not everybody have heard of that, and have any idea of what is. Can you talk about what hyperbaric oxygen therapy actually is?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes, that’s a good place to start. I can’t tell you how many people asked me about the word hyperbaric. They think of hyperbolic, or bariatric, or cryotherapy is a common one that I get. All very reasonable, I mean we’re using these chambers, and they’re these sealed tubes sometimes translucent, sometimes with little port submarine-looking things. And hyperbaric, the word, means increased atmospheric pressure.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: So what we’re doing in a chamber is we’re simulating the pressure that you would feel if you were underneath water. Water is heavy, as we all know. If you pick it up and carry it, but if you’re actually diving underneath the sea, or even in a pool, you don’t feel that water pressure, because you’re weightless in actually the water, that’s why it’s good to do exercise in it, if you have arthritis for example. So what we’re doing is we’re simulating that pressure in this chamber, and we’re actually combining that pressure with an increased amount of inspired oxygen, so the amount of oxygen that you’re breathing.
So typically, you and I, you’re in San Diego, I’m in San Francisco, we’re breathing 21% oxygen at sea level. The rest of the air that we’re breathing is like 80% nitrogen just about, a couple other gases as well, but for the most part nitrogen. And so what we do is we get rid of all those other gases, and we just breath 100% oxygen under the pressure. When you do that, you basically drive a lot more oxygen into circulation. And it’s all by physics, and it’s a physics law, the more oxygen you put under pressure, the more gas you put under the pressure, the more that pressure is going to exert an effect on the blood vessels to allow that gas to go into liquid form.
And so we’re not talking about actually diffusing any more oxygen onto the red blood cell. The red blood cell is the oxygen carrying cell usually. Most of us that have normal lungs can carry enough oxygen with the red blood cells already. And if you’ve had like a pulse ox before, like a pulse oximeter on your finger, for the most part if you have normal lungs, we’re talking like 98-99% oxygen saturation. So there’s not a whole lot more you can do by just giving more oxygen, unless you have a pneumonia, if you have COPD, emphysema, etc.
Now, where we can exert an effect though is on the plasma of the blood, which is the liquid of your blood. In the liquid, there’s not a whole lot of oxygen actually that’s saturated at sea level. But in a chamber, combining hyperbaric oxygen pressure, so the pressure plus the oxygen, you can drive up to about 1200% more oxygen, or even more therapeutically.
In fact, they’ve done studies on animals, not humans, but there is a reflection in humans, that if you’re at three atmospheres [inaudible] pressure, which is equivalent to 66 feet of sea water underneath the water, you can saturate enough oxygen into plasma that you don’t actually need … you don’t need red blood cells to carry oxygen. So this is used therapeutically for people that have a severe traumatic anemias. So you’ve gotten into a car accident, you’re bleeding out, you can go into a chamber to temporize. If you are a Jehovah’s Witness for example also, you don’t want blood transfusions, this is a temporizing maneuver. And so it’s actually in trauma centers, and that’s where I first came into contact with hyperbaric therapy was in the traumatic setting looking at the traumatic [inaudible] amputations, carbon monoxide poisoning, flesh-eating bacteria, some crazy stuff.
But I realized that it was so simple, like I discussed, just oxygen and pressure, and my mind went kinda like well, why aren’t we using this for more? And then I kinda went into the research, I delved in, this is back in like 2007, I think I started, and over the last I guess 10 years now, I’ve just learned more about it, and learned just the understanding of how universal the technology was to healing. And so that’s why I got excited.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, so it’s funny, my mind is buzzing with some many different questions, and avenues-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: That’s why I stopped.
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy was first discovered
Ari Whitten: One thing … I guess before we get into some of my more specific questions, I’m just curious, what’s the history of hyperbaric, how did this actually start? I guess how did it … How was it discovered, that this has beneficial effects on human health, and then how did it kinda back-translate into people starting to use it?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, it’s got a crazy charlatan story behind it actually.
Ari Whitten: Oh, really?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Like a lot of great medicine, right? And there’s still some people who think that hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a treatment without a disease, quote unquote. It started back in the 1600s actually before they knew what oxygen was, they just knew that if you attach an organ bellow, like those old organ bellows that kinda blow air in and out, if they sucked air out of a sealed chamber, or if they pressurized air into a chamber, they realized that people were feeling differently surprisingly. Of course not that surprisingly now, depending on if they did one or the other. And so there were sanitariums back in the 1800s, and even operating rooms, even in the early 1900s, and a little bit before that, where they were doing these kind of things and looking to see how they would affect physiology. So they take air out of chambers, and they thought that would help a tuberculosis for example. Or if they put air into the chambers, and they thought that would help with more acute conditions.
But it wasn’t really until diving and learning that if … they had people that were sunk underneath the water building bridges, the Brooklyn bridge being the most famous example, that if these guys came up too fast, they get these terrible symptoms that they called the [bens], so people would die, have seizures, paralysis, but they went back into these chambers underneath the water all their symptoms would go away if they didn’t end up dead of course. If you’re dead, you’re dead, right?
But anyway what they realized is if they could simulate this same environment in a chamber in a pressurized vessel, they would have the same effect. So that’s how hyperbaric therapy got its start, and that’s why our terminology is all in diving [inaudible], right? So we call hyperbaric treatment a dive, for example, and everything is equivalent in sea water, right? So that’s why I was mentioning 66 feet of sea water for the equivalent of pressure.
And so it wasn’t until the 1950s or so, that it started being used more formally in operating rooms. Before there was a cardiac bypass machine, there was hyperbaric oxygen therapy pressurized operating rooms, kinda like what I was mentioning before but more formalized. In fact, even now there is some pretty good data that if you put somebody in a chamber with 100% oxygen before they get on a bypass machine for their cardiac surgery, they have less neurocognitive issues afterwards, which is a big problem actually for patients that go on bypass machines for long periods of times.
So in retrospect, the history becomes more medical in the 1950s or so, and then transitions with carbon monoxide poisoning, because again, carbon monoxide is a severe illness, right? You have CO carbon monoxide molecule attached to red blood cells and you can’t get oxygen to your blood. Hyper baric oxygen therapy under pressure, you drive a lot more oxygen into circulation, you out-compete the carbon monoxide molecule.
Basically I saw people that were intubated on respirators walk out of the chamber after treatment because of this effect. And then really over the last 10 or 15 years, we’ve seen it for optimal performance types of things, also for complex medical illness, and we can talk about all of these. But also insurance-approved still for things like diabetic foot ulcers, so preventing amputations, which is really effective, radiation injury from cancer, which is a radiation injury that happen after getting cancer treatment with radiation and then you’re left with … maybe you’re left without cancer but you’re left with a debilitating morbidity or disability as a result of it, even if it’s not debilitating if it’s moderate, we can still help in the chamber.
And then there’s a couple others that are more in the acute setting, and then there is this large box that we’ll likely talk about mostly, which is complex medical illness, where it’s being used a lot outside of the US, but now more studies are showing its effect on various illnesses such as the ones that you are primarily focused on, Ari, as well as others like traumatic brain injury and stroke, and reflex sympathetic dystrophy which is a complex regional pain syndrome. I could stop talking now and go to your questions.
Where to experience hyperbaric oxygen pressure in nature
Ari Whitten: Yeah, that was beautiful. It’s fascinating to me to think about the discovery of this because it seems like there aren’t many places in nature where one would be highly pressurized. And there is obviously one which is going under water-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: But there’s another, can you think of another?
Ari Whitten: Yeah, so that was my question, with low pressure, we have obviously you travel up a mountain, you go to altitude, you experience low atmospheric pressure, but other than diving, is there another place in nature where we encounter highly pressurized environments.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: It’s our people, Ari, it’s the people, and it’s the homeland. Think of a place that’s underneath the sea.
Ari Whitten: The Dead Sea, yeah, so below sea level elevation.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes.
Ari Whitten: My guess was gonna be that’s not significant though.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: But actually, and that’s the crazy thing is that it is. And there’s actually a full study, there’s a full page, web page, dedicated to Dead Sea-related therapeutic benefits. Some of it is related to the mud, and some of that might be to some of the energetic qualities of the mud itself. But there’s also a significant benefit, because there is an increased atmospheric pressure there. So you’re 1000 meters below sea level equivalent, and that’s going to increase the amount of oxygen in circulation.
And this raises a good point. As soon as you pressurize air, so the air that’s 21% that we’re breathing now, as soon as you pressurize that, more of that oxygen is gonna go into circulation. And in fact, a lot of the studies that are negative studies that show that hyperbaric therapy doesn’t work, had some sort of sham or some sort of equivalent, so that somebody got hyperbaric therapy and 100% oxygen, and somebody else got hyperbaric therapy with just from pressed air. The problem with that, that being the sham or the placebo, is that if you pressurize air to some sort of level of sea water, or even air pressure like we’re talking about at the Dead Sea, you instantly change physiology, you instantly change how much oxygen is getting to circulation.
So for example 1.3 atmosphere which is about 20 feet of sea water equivalent, is gonna increase the amount of oxygen in circulation by 46% or so. So just with pressurizing air. So that’s a big deal, because back-
The difference between a hyperbaric session and pressurized air
Ari Whitten: Let me interrupt you for a second. What is the difference between a true hyperbaric session versus pressurized air?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: So a hyperbaric session, the definition, it depends on who you ask, right? In my opinion, if you pressurize air, you are basically in a hyperbaric environment, okay? And then if you add oxygen to that, you’re just increasing the amount of oxygen in that pressure, so increasing the amount of oxygen that can get into circulation as a result of that.
Ari Whitten: Okay, so are you in a chamber with some pressurization of the environment, the air around you, or are you with that plus breathing 100% pure oxygen?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: It can be either and it depends. So for example you are in an open air hyperbaric chamber when you are at the Dead Sea, okay? But in the chambers that are available and their different types that go to different pressures, as soon as that pressurized chamber … or as soon as it’s pressurized, you’re under hyperbaric conditions.
Now, if you ask the conventional guys, they will say that hyperbaric oxygen therapy only counts after 1.3 atmospheres or 20 feet of sea water at a 100% oxygen. But I think that’s misguided. As soon as you pressurize a vessel and you either pressurize air or you add in 100% oxygen, you are in a hyperbaric environment, your physiology is now changed, you have the stimulus of boat pressure, which is extremely important too, not only for driving oxygen into the body, but also because you’re pressurizing the blood vessels, and there’s pressure-related changes that are likely happening as a result of that, along with what we think is the major benefit, which is the 100% oxygen or even the oxygen pressurized in the air, whatever it is, you’re getting more oxygen in the circulation, and that’s really where we’re seeing the effects at the cellular level.
Ari Whitten: Fascinating stuff, so a couple things … Sorry, I’m just like there’s so many questions going through my head here.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: I like questions.
How to recover twice as fast
Ari Whitten: One of the things that peeked my interest was actually seeing a documentary on Strongman Training with this guy named Eddie Hall, who I think won the World Strongest Man competition maybe last year. And he was … They showed him going into hyperbaric chamber after training, and I think [crosstalk] something to the effect of like he can recover from training sessions using hyperbaric in what used to take 48 hours to recover, he can recover in like 4 hours, that same level of recovery. And so by doing that, he can that train like twice as much as he would otherwise be able to. And he just went on and on about how amazing it’s been for him.
So I wanna say that’s one application is lead athletes using to enhance recovery, [crosstalk] what other kinds of applications are common uses of this?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes, so just to follow up on that, I haven’t seen that documentary, I have to take a look at it, it sounds awesome.
There is a good … is it a Under Armour commercial, where Michael Phelps goes into a hyperbaric chamber too? So he uses it as well. And that’s how we’re using it. Well, there’s a couple different ways we’re using it in athletes. On the elite side of course, but also in the weekend warrior types, or the people that like to do Tough Mudders, the 510(k)s or whatever.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, I’m not competing anything but I rock climb and I weight-lift and I surf and I do a lot of activities, so I had actually looked into buying a soft chamber one for home, but then I heard some people talking about hard chambers being much better, and those are really expensive, so anyway, but maybe a question for later, sorry to interrupt.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: That’s a fantastic question, yeah, I’ll definitely wanna touch on that piece, it’s an important point, especially to delineate the difference between the two types. But okay, put that aside for now.
On the elite athlete or the athletic side, there is the ability to increase endurance, because we can actually regrow blood vessels around the heart or actually grow more blood vessels, so that’s gonna increase your cardiac capacity. Also it regrows blood vessels in the brain for example, and we’ll get to this when we talk about … I’m getting ahead of myself as always.
Anyways, so from the elite athlete perspective, it’s improving endurance, improving recovery, injury recovery. And that extends towards the other reasons we’re using hyperbaric therapy for, which was your question. And so really I think to take a one little step back, or maybe a large step back, but important, is say, you have all this oxygen in circulation, right? Now, what is that actually doing, right?
And then you have to think about there is the acute stimulus of hyperbaric therapy, increasing oxygen in the circulation, and there is the more long-term benefit of having a hyperbaric oxygen therapy stimulus, okay?
So in the acute setting, you’re reoxygenating the body very fast. So if you’ve had an injury for example, if you’ve had a trauma, have some tissue that may be at risk of not staying alive, say, it’s your brain, or your heart, or one of your limbs is hanging off, you can potentially reoxygenate areas that may be at risk for dying, because you’ve got more oxygen into circulation, it can diffuse further into the tissue, so it prevents some of that tissue that may be at risk for dying ’cause it’s not getting enough blood flow, from degenerating and then releasing all these bad factors that happen as a result of that. Cytokines, hormones, inflammatory mediators, all that stuff that gets released when tissue is at risk of dying.
And so on the other end of that is something called reperfusion injury. So we have all those bad things get released and then blood flow gets restored, then even more damage can happen. So on the front end, you’re actually preventing some of that injury, or maybe a significant amount of that. We talk about it in micron death, but like basically four times more diffusion into tissue length, and so that’s a crap load, or a shit load, whatever you wanna say, of tissue that you could potentially prevent from dying. So that’s big.
We’re also talking about … In the acute setting, we’re also decreasing the size of blood vessels, and so if you’ve had an injury to a blood vessel that’s leaking stuff, you want that blood vessel to get smaller, so it’s leaking less stuff. And so hyperbaric therapy immediately decreases the size of blood vessels.
There might be the question, “Well, is that a good thing when you’re trying to get more oxygen?” But because you’ve saturated the plasma with so much oxygen, you’re actually net-getting a lot more oxygen to that tissue regardless.
Ari Whitten: So say that again. It decreases the size of blood vessels?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, it decreases the size of your blood vessel. But that’s okay, because if you’ve had a vessel that’s been injured and leaking stuff, if you can decrease the size of the blood vessel, less stuff is gonna leak out of that blood vessel, causing inflammatory changes in the tissue bed.
Ari Whitten: And that’s an acute change, correct?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: An acute change.
Ari Whitten: When you’re under the highly pressurized environment-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Right, exactly. This is when you’re in an acute hyperbaric environment, and this is what’s happening in acute injury for example. Okay? There’s more things that are happening, it’s dramatically decreasing inflammation almost immediately. It’s also preventing a lot of the pathways that cause immediate apoptosis, or immediate cell death in tissue that’s been injured.
It’s actually all related to, interestingly enough, oxidative stress, which is something that we throw around as a bad thing, and it is a bad thing if it’s done unchecked, but in a short term stimulus, it can actually be very beneficial to allow some of these changes to happen.
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a form of hormesis
Ari Whitten: That actually is one of my areas of particular passion, what you’re talking about there, and my audience is pretty familiar with that concept now, ’cause I’ve talked about … I’ve had a few people on that talked about it, I talk about it so much, the concept of hormesis, and this transient metabolic stressor transient sort of spike of oxidative stress and inflammation, depending on that type of hormetic stress, in this case more oxidative stress, but you’re introducing all of this oxygen into the system and creating the spike in reactive oxygen species, and yet because it’s this transient spike, it’s actually inducing a net antioxidant effect, you’re stimulating the cells internal antioxidant defense mechanisms.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: That’s exactly what’s happening. And so that’s why I almost never recommend just one hyperbaric treatment, because it takes about three treatments to see that reactive antioxidant capacity come up significantly, through things like glutathione and RF1 pathways. And it’s actually beautiful to see, and we have these studies to show how that antioxidant capacity goes up.
Now, of course if you have a lot of oxidative stress prior to all of this, it’s important to measure the levels if you can, or just if you don’t have that ability to just understand that you’d likely have to increase your antioxidant capacity probably exogenously through oral antioxidant for example, just to help out and make sure that you have enough capacity.
But hyperbaric therapy works through oxidative stress in the acute setting like I was mentioning. But long-term it’s causing epigenetic changes, or changes to how DNA is actually expressing and suppressing genes. And that’s how it causes new blood vessels to form. That’s how it causes stem cells to be released from the bone marrow and other location, to go to areas of injury, inflammation and heal them. That’s how it creates new cartilage cells, new connective tissue cells, and new bone. It can heal bone very fast actually.
And so this reflects not only in the elite athlete population, but people with chronic infections, people with chronic injuries that are long-standing. It’s the acute stimulus that can really help somebody, especially with an acute injury, heal much faster, hyper-drive that whole stimulus, wound healing, decreasing inflammation, reversing low oxygen. But in the long term in patients with chronic medical illness, especially in integrative mindset, looking at what the whole picture of the person is, that’s where you can see complete rejuvenation of the body’s physiology.
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy can reverse erectile dysfunction
And we’re using this therapeutically for things like chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, in the integrative setting. But even in the anti-aging world, the Israelis call it reverse aging, and they have a huge program in Tel Aviv, and I think I was telling you about this, Ari, when we met. These guys have lik a 20,000 person waiting list, simply for rejuvenative medicine in a hyperbaric chamber, regenerating blood vessels in the brain, in the heart, in the penis, and-
Ari Whitten: That’s mainly what the 20,000 person waiting list is. 19,999 of them are men with erectile dysfunction.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: It’s a great story, the doctor’s name is Dr. [inaudible], he showed me a picture of a penis, an MRI, blood vessel before and after, so blood vascular flow, and then he said, “I give these to my patients and they show them to their friends, and I have more patients.”
Ari Whitten: That’s great.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Gotta love the Israelis, man.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. So I wanna go back to something real quick that you kind of mentioned in passing which is that in some people, and I think with severe chronic conditions, severe illness, in particular like chronic fatigue syndrome, there’s a number of others, maybe chronic Lyme disease, or maybe chronic Epstein-Barr. There are a number of condition where there seems to be a dysregulation of redox status, of the body’s sort of ability to respond to oxidative stress, and there seems to be this chronic oxidative stress that’s going on at the cellular level. And in those people, you kind of alluded to this, but in those people they seem to be maybe highly sensitive to it and maybe get negative effects. The same way if you take a person with chronic fatigue syndrome and ask them to do exercise, they’re extremely intolerant to exercise, and they have something called post exertional malaise, where they basically feel wiped out for several days after this. And part of that seems to be this kind of lack of … this poor redox status at the cellular level.
On the contrary, you mentioned maybe supplementing with antioxidants, but there’s also research, I don’t know if you’re familiar with this, but there is research from a German researcher, Michael Ristow, who has shown that if you take antioxidants around exercise, you actually inhibit the benefits of exercise.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Very true, yeah.
How oxidative stress affects the body
Ari Whitten: So I’m wondering if maybe that’s also true … Like maybe on the surface it seems like a good idea, hey take a bunch of antioxidants prior to doing you’re hyperbaric sessions, but maybe that inhibits at least some of the benefits of the hyperbaric session?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, and I think that’s a great paper, and it’s a great description of what’s happening under oxidative stress, and especially the stress intolerance, so people with a lot of chronic inflammation. And I do see that happen in the chamber. So for example, you mentioned chronic fatigue and Lyme, perfect examples of this. When I first started training in hyperbaric therapy, I saw Lyme patients go into the chamber, and they couldn’t walk for a week-
Ari Whitten: Wow.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: … if you put them in deep pressures. I saw chronic fatigue patients with the same kind of thing, because of that oxidative stress dysregulation, probably genetic expression changes as a result of this chronic oxidative inflammatory [inaudible] environment in the cellular level.
And so I often, prior to understanding the concept of testing, health optimization medicine as you know, and from having Dr. Ted on, is that even if I gave [inaudible] antioxidants, it was better, because at least they can tolerate treatment. Especially if it’s being done in an integrative way, if we’re like, “Look, we know that you have a lot of oxidative stress, we know that hyperbaric therapy can help, we probably would mitigate some of the effects in a normal person, but in somebody that has a lot of ongoing stress, it may make sense.”
Now, optimally, you don’t do that, you will let the hormetic stress happen, you let that reactive antioxidant response happen. But in the real world, with chronic complex medical illness, the best case scenario and something that I’ve implemented in my practice is the health optimization medicine framework, which is testing for antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, [inaudible] factors, gut health, food sensitivities, and then once you have all that in place, that’s when you can even start really really optimizing, right?
So health optimization medicine is a cellular optimization framework that works beautifully for everybody, it doesn’t matter if you’re extremely sick, or you don’t have any medical problems. We all should optimize at that level. And then you should take it to the functional medicine approach if you have chronic Lyme for example, I will never put somebody in a hyperbaric chamber after my experience, that doesn’t also have a Lyme-literate physician that’s also helping them. Because if they’re not looking in combination, some of the benefits from hyperbaric therapy may be transient or they may not happen at all, or they may not be optimal.
So I think the key really is the measure, if you can. If that’s not possible, then looking at and integrative strategy as much as possible. Especially detox that’s the biggest thing I’ve found in patients that have a lot of inflammatory oxidative stress, we talk about saunas, we talk about … I mean there is some controversy on [inaudible] hydrotherapy, but I have had some patients that have had some success there from detox and the Herxheimer kind of reaction that can happen from Lyme especially.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, interesting. So a couple things that come to mind. One is just I’m wondering if a lot of this could be … Well, actually, sorry. The first one is if you take antioxidants around the hyperbaric session, it seems to me that may be a lot of the benefits of hyperbaric specifically are not necessarily from hormesis. Maybe that’s just part of the overall complex of different mechanisms. But it’s possible that maybe you could get a lot of healing benefits just by elevating tissue oxygen levels, and that’s not affected by taking the antioxidants, whereas some of the excess oxidative stress could be mitigated by taking antioxidants with that specific kind of hormetic stress.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Especially bugs that don’t like oxygen. Right, so that’s a key factor, so … or in bugs that don’t like a lot of oxygen. That’s the other thing. So like for example the borrelia Lyme is … it’s called a facultative anaerobe, basically doesn’t like high oxygen and oxygen environments. So that’s one of the reasons why we think it’s effective for Lyme especially.
The co-infections that typically come with Lyme like Babesia, Bartonella, some other ones, Ehrlichia, [inaudible] etc, they are oxygen-savvy, however we do have some indications anecdotally that because if we use deeper pressures, we’re okay. And we can still cause enough oxidative stress to really have some effect on those organisms themselves.
The difference between soft and hard chambers
But this puts up I think a really important part of understanding the difference between … And you mentioned this before about soft chambers versus hard chambers. Soft chambers. Soft chambers go to 1.3 atmospheres, okay? And that’s 22-24 feet of sea water equivalent-
Ari Whitten: By the way, real quick, what was the average atmospheric pressure at the Dead Sea?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Dead sea, it’s like 1.03 atmospheres or something like that. It’s not a huge amount of-
Ari Whitten: [crosstalk] changes enough to induce an effect.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: And that’s what’s beautiful about it. So that’s why I think the soft chambers can have an effect, okay? But at the same time, it’s important to understand where I think they can mostly be effective. And I think that’s actually mostly neurocognitively, plus exercise optimization, so for recovery. Because you are getting a pressure wave, right? So you get that pressure when you’re under pressure, and that pressure is going to stimulate lymphatic flow, so it will stimulate lymphatic detox, some hormetic stress, but not a huge amount, and I think that’s where you’re seeing some of the improvements from exercise and I’m having patients that are using it for cognitive enhancement, cognitive optimization.
But if you’re using hyperbaric therapy for infection, I do not recommend the soft chambers, because you really need to get to those deeper pressures to get enough oxidative stress and enough oxygen to some of these bugs that may like a little bit of oxygen but they don’t like a lot of oxygen, okay? And I have seen patients get worse in the soft chambers, even, and this is interesting, when they’re using it for cognitive enhancement, right? So they think they’re using it because they’re gonna get their brains better, but they feel worse. And 9 times out of 10, this is because they have bugs floating around that they didn’t know of.
And this is something that I see a lot now in traumatic brain injury. Because post-concussive syndrome or traumatic brain injury is something that’s on the rise, we more about now. And we often think of it as a hit to the head and then these symptoms last a long time. The question is why? And there’s two reasons in my estimation. That’s because they need health optimization medicine to balance-optimize all those pathways, but a significant proportion of these patients that I have found, have infections floating around, or have a dysregulation of their immune system because of an infection. It may not be the infection itself that’s causing it.
So they’re vastly under-appreciated in the general community-
Ari Whitten: Let me just interrupt real quick. So you’re [inaudible] in people who get like concussion get some kind of head injury, what differentiates those who experience lasting symptoms for a really long time versus those who recover, you think infections are a factor there?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: They can be. Yeah, that’s definitely been my experience. It’s usually some sort of … It’s crazy what I see. Sometimes I’ll see a patient come to me and they’ll have a brain injury for like three months, and then I have them check their labs and their iron deficiency. I mean that’s gonna do it too. But if you’ve done the basic stuff, and all that looks okay, then hypothetically you do health optimization medicine if you can on these patients, but a lot of times I’ll just go directly to infection testing too, if there’s any indication to me that they may have an infection floating around, if possible. At least doing some screening because you’re gonna optimize them, if you can treat them obviously and then you’re gonna save them a bunch of money and a bunch of time in something that wasn’t gonna be effective for them. So that’s where I was going.
How to adapt treatment to your condition
Ari Whitten: Very very interesting. So one question I have for you on the whole hormetic stress aspect of things. I’m curious, do you have particular times that you treat people for, and are there like specific protocols where someone comes in and everybody is given, whatever, a 45-minutes session, or I don’t know how long the sessions last, but however long of a session, is that the case, how it normally works?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, so it’s an important point. So no matter what type of chamber you use, whether it’s a soft or a hard chamber you’re usually doing it in successive days of treatment. So it’s not just once or twice a week, unless it’s for exercise recovery, otherwise it’s being done in a cumulative way, because the way we’re working is epigenetically like we discussed. So looking at how to suppress and express genetic material differently, and so that takes a stimulant that’s done usually as far as the amount of time per treatment, it’s about 60 to 90 minutes per treatment. That’s done Monday through Friday with the weekends off for some period of time.
So, for example, in an acute injury, three treatments is usually the minimum. Sometimes a little bit more. So I have patients that come in after ACL tears, hip fracture repairs, Tommy John surgery is a … or NFL athletes that have tricep repairs or whatever, all this stuff. These people can get a significant stimulus very quickly, like three treatments. But if it’s more of a chronic issue, more of a long-term, long-standing chronic illness, or a chronic condition, then we’re talking 20, 40, sometimes as many as 60 or 80 treatments, to really see the full benefits of being in the chamber. But it’s a significant time investment as you can see. And so that’s why I love to optimize beforehand just to maximize somebody’s time in their chamber, or in a chamber, because I understand that this is an investment in time and money too.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, so the reason that I bring that up is that with regards to these people who are highly reactive to these sorts of oxidative stress and really feel wiped out for days afterwards. It leads people with a lot of these conditions, my experience is chronic fatigue syndrome, specifically and fibromyalgia, it leads a lot of these people to conclude, “Hey, I’m not supposed to exercise because exercise wipes me out, it makes me feel terrible. I’m not supposed to go in the sauna, because I’ve tried going in a sauna and I felt terrible.”
So it’s very very counter-intuitive for these people to actually start to do some of these hormetic stressors, and yet in my experience, hormetic stress is actually one of the most powerful ways to get these people to recover-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Right, and there’s good data to support that.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, so the trick though is that these people have to start at very very small doses, way smaller than most people can tolerate.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes, and we do that in the chamber too.
Ari Whitten: Okay, so, yeah, that’s where I was getting at, is like does everybody get 60-minute treatments, or 90-minute treatment or do you take people with Lyme disease or chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia, and say, “We’re gonna give you a five-minute treatment to start with, and then an eight-minute treatment, and so on,”?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Usually the way we do it is not changing the time as much as we change the pressure.
Ari Whitten: The pressure.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: So we’ll start off very lightly, especially in patients like you’re discussing, it’s extremely important. One of the challenges in my field is that there isn’t a universal understanding of this, right? So you’ll have patients totally have these terrible experiences and they’ll come to me and they’ll say, “Dr. Scott, I went into a chamber I couldn’t move for a week.” I’m like okay.
Ari Whitten: And most physicians will see that as nocebo effect or just hypochondria or something like that.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Right, it’s all in their head, the usual stuff. And so in my experience just like you said, Ari, it’s really important to [inaudible] up. I’ve had patients with chronic Lyme for example. So typically the treatment depth for Lyme is 2 or 2.4 atmospheres. So it’s about 45 feet of sea water, but they start [inaudible 00:38:08] at like 1.3 or 1.5, and if that happens first of all, I’ve already had this discussion with them, I know how sick they are. And so often, especially in Lyme disease, I don’t recommend patients go into a chamber until they’ve actually gotten about 80% better, because that’s when the power of that last 20% that we can really help with.
So the challenge also, again, anybody that has their treatment that says you should just go to my treatment, this is what you should do, this is what I do, right? If you’re a cardiologist, you can do an echocardiogram. If you’re a pulmonologist, you get a chest X-ray and pulmonary function test in the conventional setting.
So in hyperbaric field, it’s the same thing. And that’s why my practice is an integrative one, so when somebody comes to see me, or the way I practice, is like, “Yeah, you found because you wanted a hyperbaric therapy, but now let’s discuss this bigger picture of how we can help you.” Are you seeing a Lyme physician? Have you considered health optimization medicine, you probably haven’t heard about it, go watch Dr. Ted’s podcast with Ari [inaudible], right, to get a sense of what you can do.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Let’s talk about other practitioners, let’s talk about massage therapists, lymphatic massages specialists, let’s talk about chiropractic and neuro chiropractic, and osteopathic. Talk about other technologies, neurofeedback, floating in a float tank, lots of other technologies that you and I both know very well, and it can be a great integrative way to describe the power of what we do, understanding that what I do in the hyperbaric field, I think it’s an amazing synergizer, I think it’s an amazing accelerator of healing and of optimization. But done in a silo on its own, it’s just not as good as it could be, and sometimes not what you should do.
And so if somebody says to me, “I’m not gonna see a Lyme doctor, I’m not gonna go see a function medicine doctor.” I go, “Okay, good luck. You can maybe try the sauna.” Something that’s gonna be easy for them to do because it’s not something that I feel … My own passion is to help people and I don’t feel like that’s really helping, if say, “Yeah, just go in a chamber and see how you do.”
Ari Whitten: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. So we’ve talked about a few different applications of this with infections, with athletes, with … spacing on what else you mentioned there. I mean it was all kind of-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: I threw it all together in this-
Ari Whitten: It’s all in a big-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: I can just list them. We can do like a list, I can do-
Which treatments hyperbaric oxygen therapy works for
Ari Whitten: Yeah, so let’s condense this into a list of like maybe some of the best conditions or uses for this technology.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Okay, best of, I like it. And it’s also important I think for your listeners and viewers to know that the way I experienced hyperbaric therapy was in a trauma center. And because that was the case hyperbaric therapy is a covered Medicare commercial insurance covered modality, covered treatment for four conditions, that hopefully none of you ever have, but if you do, it’s very effective. But first, as I mentioned all right is if you have diabetes, and you have an ulcer on your foot, it can prevent amputations, it can heal wounds on your feet. So that’s a good thing.
I’ve has patients that have come to see me with amputations prior, we save a toe or a leg, and they tell me, “Well, why didn’t I know about this before I had my other amputations?” And so this is a grassroots kinds of thing. Unfortunately, in the US our predilection is for intervention and for … Unfortunately, doctors also get paid for procedures, so there’s some issue there.
But anyway, diabetic foot ulcers is number one. Number two is radiation injury from cancer. So if you’ve had radiation treatment to your prostate, to your breasts, to your brain, to your head and neck, you get an injury, hyperbaric therapy is a covered indication, it will be covered by your insurance plan, it will help you. It’s probably the best treatment for radiation injury, hands down. I’ve seen patients bleeding for years, either from the rectum or when they urinate, and it stops the bleeding, they stop getting pain, it’s really quite beautiful, and obviously very satisfying for all involved.
And the third one is chronic bone infection, so something called osteomyelitis. Another one is sudden hearing loss, so those that have had a sudden loss of hearing. This is a crazy one, it can happen to anybody, any age, you wake up one morning you lose hearing. You think this is a viral infection or maybe autoimmune. Hyperbaric therapy can regenerate that hearing, and again, if this happens it’s crazy what I … I mean you wake up one day, you can’t hear, the next day it can come back in the chamber. But unfortunately a lot of ENTs don’t immediately refer, so just keep that in your mind.
But that’s the covered indications, and then there’s this big box of investigational, not covered by insurance. So it’s gonna be an out-of-pocket cost for the client. And that includes traumatic brain injury, a lot of great data coming out in traumatic brain injury-
Ari Whitten: Yeah, I’ve seen a number of great studies there.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, it’s amazing. I mean I’ve had kids that are suicidal from ski accidents go back to school and get good grades.
Ari Whitten: Wow.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Amazing what I can see in athletes, veterans as well, so patients that have been in the military service, and a lot of it also has an effect on the PTSD portion as well. A lot of that is really combined together.
They’ve done some studies looking at veterans, and I think three quarters of those that have been classified as having PTSD actually have brain injures as well. And it’s not surprising, because the pressure blast, this is a little crazy, but the pressure blast from an IED actually causes air embolism in the brain. And air embolism is like these small pockets of air that block blood flow for micro seconds. But that micro second loss of blood flow is actually causing tissue damage, it’s actually quite crazy.
So in any respect, traumatic brain injury, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, there’s a match made in beautiful optimistic … in optimization heaven. And I’ve seen it countless times unless they have an infections, as I’ve said.
So traumatic brain injury, patients post-stroke, patients with reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or a complex regional pain syndrome, patients that are pre-post surgery. They just wanna heal faster from their surgery, it’s gonna heal you about 50% faster, and that could be important. If you’re an athlete, or if you just care about getting off your feet or back on your feet, or if you don’t wanna have raccoon eyes after your plastic surgery on your nose. Yeah, for example, and that’s cool too.
Additional things, we’re looking in the neurocognitive world now, like patients with mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, even multiple sclerosis. There’s some relatively good data, it’s coming out, I can keep going but the rejuvenative medicine department, so combining hyperbaric therapy with PRP and stem cells. I’ve had some significant success doing that. Not only for athletes, but actually in some patients with traumatic brain injuries, patients with Lyme disease, interestingly enough. Stem cells plus HBOT plus ozone is kind of a crazy combination, but I’ve seen some really amazing results. I can keep going, but I think that’s-
Ari Whitten: Yeah, I know. Maybe if you wanna keep going, if there’s any ones that come to mind that you feel like you’re missing. I have a couple specific questions-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, please ask, I think that would be helpful. There’s cancer too, cancer too.
Ari Whitten: That was one of my questions. So cancer, I think, feels like to me kind of an interesting one, because we hear sometimes kind of this talk of cancer thrives in more of an anaerobic environment. And then at the same time, there is also part of the mechanism of hyperbaric therapy is that it stimulates angiogenesis-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Right.
Ari Whitten: … it stimulates red blood vessel formation, which is cancers are already kind of doing that excessively and maybe we don’t wanna stimulate that, so it seems like there is some mechanisms that you could potentially make the case for either wouldn’t be good, or might be good, what’s the actual verdict as far as … Have studies looked at the effect on cancer?
Yeah, so they’ve done a number of reviews on cancer specifically in the chamber. And there is no indication at all that hyperbaric therapy has any progressive effect on cancer.
They’ve looked at a couple specific cancers as being a mild regressive effect, simply just being in the chamber, one of them being glioblastoma, which is not surprising given it’s a very hypoxic tumor, very little oxygen environment, and also in breast cancer actually, interestingly enough.
But we often … The way I think about hyperbaric therapy in cancer is a synergistic tool. It’s not a treatment for cancer directly. But to finish up, I think the reason … We don’t know exactly why hyperbaric therapy doesn’t make cancer grow, but we do think that it has something to do with how blood vessels form in a hypoxic environment around a cancer, versus how they form naturally in place that’s had an injury for example. They form very differently, they use different hormones, different cytokines, different inflammatory [inaudible]. And we think that’s why.
But I can say even though those studies haven’t been done exactly, there’s been several of use over time. I think the last one back in 2012 or 2013, that show exactly this point, that there’s no indication hyperbaric therapy has a pro-growth effect on cancer.
Ari Whitten: And may have a slight regressive effect.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, and we know that actually it helps chemotherapeutic sensitivity, interestingly enough, it helps with radiation sensitivity as well. Glioblastoma specifically, they’re looking at the combination of hyperbaric oxygen therapy with radiation. Because if you’re hyper-oxygenate the tissue, you can get more radiation to that tissue. Radiation is oxygen-sensitive. So radiation only works if there’s oxygen getting to that particular tissue, and actually some of the initial data is very good.
And this is interesting, because we’re looking at a high oxygen stimulus in a chamber driving more oxygen to the body. That oxygen stays in circulation for a period of time, once you leave the chamber. So what they’re doing is they’re putting somebody in the chamber and immediately rolling them over to radiation.
Interestingly this property also has application in endurance in athletes, because if you have extra oxygen in circulation for an hour, hour and a half after you get out of the chamber, say, it’s a soft chamber next to race for example, you have an increased oxygen-carrying capacity as a result of that extra oxygen without having to dope and give yourself more red blood cells, or take EPO for then an hour and a half once you get out of the chamber. So interestingly, it does have that application as well.
But back to cancer, so chemo sensitization, radiation sensitization, it’s gonna help you heal faster from any oncologic surgery that you might have [inaudible].
Now, I’ve seen some of your thoughts about the ketogenic diet, but the ketogenic diet with hyperbaric therapy does seem to be a little bit of a one-two punch in the sense of [inaudible] cancer, at lest, as far as a health strategy … In Ketogenic diet we can talk about … That’s a different thing I think-
Ari Whitten: No, I mean there’s definitely some positive research in certain cancers for sure, in certain-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Not all cancers, [crosstalk]. And that’s also important is not all cancers. And I think that’s another issue that we’re looking at. Some prostate cancers are actually fat-savvy, right? And some melanomas are fat-savvy as well, so you have to be careful here.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: However, in actually metastatic prostate cancer for whatever reason it’s not fat-savvy and it responds to ketogenic diet, but localized prostate cancer … Anyway, I have other people that are smarter than me that I refer patients to if they’re interested in this.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, I’m supposed to have a guy named Chad [Masias] who’s a cancer researcher, and he talks a lot about where ketogenic diets are useful and why they’re not in different kind of cancers. It’s a fascinating subject and [crosstalk] I’m gonna dig in to all that with him very soon.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: And the clinical applications, I have a great lady you need to talk to, she’s in Oregon, her name is Dr. [inaudible] and she’s an integrative oncologist. She’s actually doing chemo, which is also doing keto, she’s doing mathematical modeling of prostate cancer, very interesting stuff.
Ari Whitten: Cool.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: So I’ll put you guys in contact. But anyway.
Ari Whitten: That’ll be great.
So I think also when we were in person, you mentioned to me a little about multiple sclerosis and autoimmune diseases, if I’m remembering correctly. So can you talk a bit about those or maybe some cases where hyperbaric therapy is not a good idea?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, that’s also a good question. I think when it comes to autoimmune disease and multiple sclerosis, it depends on number one what do you believe about multiple sclerosis, right? Do you believe it’s an autoimmune physiology or pathophysiology? Do you think it’s a viral? Do you think it’s bugs? I have seen patients that have been diagnosed with MS that also have Lyme, I’m sure you know those patients too.
So I think I am not quick to put these patients in chambers, however, unless they’re having an acute flare, now what I have seen it be able to do in acute flare is mitigate inflammation, mitigate tissue loss, in this case, no tissue loss in patients with multiple sclerosis. So that’s an exception.
For the most part, if you have autoimmune disease, if you have an autoimmune condition, it’s really important that I am just a single part of a team that’s helping this patient, okay? In my experience functional medicine is extremely helpful here, and also now of course the non-illness medicine side, the health optimization medicine side, that I think is so extremely important with these patients.
If you don’t do that work first, these patients are not gonna get better in the hyperbaric chamber. If they do, it’s going to be fleeting, and in some cases that could be a good thing. So for example I’ve had a couple lupus patients with kidney problems, looking out at the point of dialyses, because they have so much inflammatory cascades going on. You can mitigate some of that inflammation in the chamber, ’cause we know hyperbaric therapy is as effective at steroids, acutely, and actually has the effect on TNF alpha, which is one of the major drug targets for a lot of these disorder when [inaudible 00:52:38] arthritis, lupus, other autoimmune conditions.
So we know it’s going to work acutely to help patients. But again, knowing that it’s not going to be the answer in the long term, for sure.
Ari Whitten: Awesome. So I guess on a final note, where do you practice, if somebody wants to come see you, how do they work with you?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: So I live in the Bay Area, as you know, Ari, and I work virtually as well as in a couple hyperbaric clinics in my area. I also work virtually with a couple hyperbaric clinics across the US. I’m involved with a company in New York called hyperbaric Medical Solutions-
Ari Whitten: Is this like virtual hyperbaric therapy where somebody just puts on some goggles and they make-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Oh man, I wish. It could be our experience with pressure.
Ari Whitten: But seriously explain what that means, that you work virtually.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, yeah, so what I have done is that I’ve realized that I think where I am best, I think where I can best facilitate is in an online presence, so that people from around the world can contact me, talk to me about hyperbaric oxygen therapy in my context which is an integrative context. And then what I can do is help them understand how it can best be utilized within their own particular framework depending on what’s going on. So I coordinate with facilities all over the world, the Israelis, England, Scotland, Ireland, new facilities are popping up all around, United Arab Emirates. But then I also work more closely with a couple places in the US, but I know a lot of the facilities around here, so if I’m not directly affiliated, I can help coordinate with local facilities and help with protocol recommendation, help with local docs, local functional docs, local health optimization medicine docs as well as they get trained.
And so what I do I’m a conductor of hyperbaric therapy but really like I’m just a conductor in the sense of an integrative medicine doctor, help optimization medicine doctor helping patients virtually.
So my website is IntegrativeHBOT.com, so you go there, you can contact me there, we can setup an online consultation-
Ari Whitten: And just spell that for people. So it’s integrative and then HBOT, correct?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yes, so IntegrativeHBOT.com, the word integrative and the letters HBOT.com-
Ari Whitten: [crosstalk] Just in case somebody heard B as P or something like that.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, google Scott Sherr MD, and either you would get some guy at Sony, that’s not me, or me. So the other places you can find me as you likely know, Ari, is HealthOptimizationMedicine.org, which I am part of that organization as you know. And then also @DrSherr D-R-S-H-E-R-R on Twitter, and as well as on Facebook IntegrativeHBOT is my page there, so-
Ari Whitten: So I have to say you’re way more important than I realized. I thought you were just running a clinic over in the Bay Area, and people would have to travel across the country or work with you or something like that, but you’re consultant to clinics all over the world?
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Yeah, that’s the fun part. I love seeing patients in person too though.
Ari Whitten: You’re big time.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Oh no. I have a clinic in San Francisco called Hyperbaric Medical Services and I see patients there, and I have some clinics in San Jose, the peninsula, that I also go see. So I love seeing patients in person too, but I have three more kids than you Ari, so I try to spend as much time with my children as I can.
Ari Whitten: Yeah, awesome, Scott. Well, this has been such a pleasure to do this with you and you’re very articulate and a great speaker, so it makes it extra fun. And you’re also knowledgeable about a lot of tangential areas, which makes it super fun for me-
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: [crosstalk] The tangents are fun, I love the tangents.
Ari Whitten: Yes, totally. This has been an absolute pleasure, and I hope to have you on again, and for everyone listening, you can reach Scott at IntegrativeHBOT.com.
So, Scott, thank you again, and look forward to talking with you again soon.
Dr. Scott Sherr MD: Thank you Ari, it’s been a pleasure.
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to Overcome Chronic Fatigue, Recover Twice as Fast, Fix Erectile Dysfunction, Heal Brain Injuries and More with Scott Sherr MD – Show Notes
What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy? (1:48)
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy was first discovered (5:58)
Where to experience hyperbaric oxygen pressure in nature (10:40)
The difference between a hyperbaric session and pressurized air (12:56)
How to recover twice as fast (15:03)
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a form of hormesis (20:38)
How hyperbaric oxygen therapy can reverse erectile dysfunction (23:15)
How oxidative stress affects the body (25:48)
The difference between soft and hard chambers (30:32)
How hidden infections can affect recovery time (32:56)
How to adapt treatment to your condition (33:58)
Which treatments hyperbaric oxygen therapy works for (40:36)
You can reach Scott at IntegrativeHBOT.com