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HMI White Paper on Coronavirus 

March 2020





Barry Meuse, MA, Colonel, USAF (Ret), President & Chairman

Paul Hoffecker, CEO/Executive Director

Xavier Figueroa, PhD, Treasurer, Director

Ray Cralle, PT, Director

Dom D’Agostino, PhD, Director

Daphne Denham, MD, Director

Mike Flynn, Lt General, USA (Ret), Director

Ed Di Girolamo, PE, Director

Julio Gonzalez, Director

Diane Levitan, VMD, Secretary, Director

Gina Loudon, PhD, Director

Joe Maroon, MD, Director

Tami Peterson, PhD, Director

George Wolf, MD, Colonel, USAF (Ret), Director




“Amid the Coronavirus epidemic/pandemic it bears remembering the application of hyperbaric oxygen therapy to the last major pandemic that impacted the United States in 1918, the Spanish Flu Pandemic. Death was primarily by pulmonary infection and its attendant hypoxemia and respiratory failure.”  


“The first application of hyperbaric medicine to a Spanish Flu victim was likely also the first application to a human being in the United States. In 1918 Dr. Orval Cunningham of Kansas City was brought a dying friend of a fellow physician.” 


“The patient was moribund and blue. Dr. Cunningham was asked to treat this dying patient. With just a one-hour treatment with compressed air at 1.68 atmospheres absolute the patient experienced improvement. Combined with additional hyperbaric treatments over the next 3 days this patient’s life was saved. Others followed.” 


Today’s Coronavirus’ high mortality rate has been linked to pulmonary infection and septic shock . . . the primary pathology is in the lungs, the first organ of contact with hyperbaric therapy beyond the skin.


This not only allows adequate oxygen to reach the blood and therefore the whole rest of the body but hyperbaric oxygen therapy also inhibits the inflammatory process, allowing healing from the viral infection.


“Applied correctly, hyperbaric therapy may have utility in Coronavirus patients like its life-saving history with the

Spanish Flu.” - Paul Harch, MD, Harch Hyperbarics Inc.




Hyperbaric Oxygen therapy (HBOT) is already used internationally to heal patients in the most-at-risk COVID-19 groups (heart disease, cancer, COPD, stroke, critical care, etc). it is a lifesaving therapy even without a virus present. 


Treating high-risk Coronavirus patients – those who have the Coronavirus and who suffer from an underlying issue such as pulmonary disease, pneumonia, cardiac disease, diabetes, etc – with hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help save lives. HBOT adds oxygen to hypoxic tissue, reduces inflammation, strengthens the immune system to defeat the Coronavirus – all the while improving the underlying medical condition which could otherwise be fatal.




“The anti-inflammatory effects of oxygen, especially when increased in the body by hyperbaric oxygen therapy, are well documented. We know inflammation, even inflamasomes, cannot exist unless oxygen is low.” 


“Hyper-oxygenation is a deterrent to the Coronavirus. Also, note that the 2019 Nobel Prize in Medicine was "Oxygen and the Cell" where Hypoxic inducible Factor 1-alpha was recognized as the precursor of all disease and tumor growth. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy saves lives by combating inflammation and hypoxia.”

- Ray Cralle, PT




Note that in March 2020, the World Health Organization said that “Oxygen therapy is the major treatment intervention for patients with severe COVID-19. All countries should work to optimize the availability of pulse oximeters and medical oxygen systems.” 




Hyperbaric Medicine International (HMI) is a 501c4 nonprofit dedicated: 1/ to advocating hyperbaric oxygen therapy as the standard of care for a broad array of medical conditions worldwide including inflammation; and  

2/ to certifying physicians, technicians and clinics to assure hyperbaric oxygen therapy is delivered under high medical standards and reaches all in need.


We encourage all healthcare practitioners consider hyperbaric oxygen therapy for high-risk Coronavirus patients. 



President and Chairman of the Board

M 571.237.5403


Information provided by Hyperbaric Medicine International does not constitute medical diagnosis or recommendations, and is intended for informational purposes only.

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