The Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS) is an international non-profit organization serving members from more than 50 countries. The UHMS is the primary source of scientific information for diving and hyperbaric medicine physiology worldwide.

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Featured News

Thursday, June 27

Controversies in the Hyperbaric Management of Late Radiation Injuries



A new appraisal: The fibroatrophic model of LRTI and HBO2
John Feldmeier, MD




Controversies in hyperbaric oxygen for treatment and prevention of ORN
Richard Marx, DDS


Physiology and Science in Hyperbaric Medicine


Stem cells and hyperbaric oxygen therapy
Stephen Thom, MD

Thom picThe first scientific papers reporting effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) on stem cell biology were published just 12 years ago and now they number over 100. This presentation will summarize the latest data on stem cell physiological responses to HBOT. Oxygen acts as a critical regulator of stem cells, and HBOT has a variety of effects on stem cell mobilization dynamics, metabolism, engraftment, and can influence paracrine roles with tissue repair. Some effects appear with the initial HBOT exposure while others develop when repeated hyperoxia-normoxia cycling occurs. Mechanisms and data on clinical utilization will be presented, as well as current questions and future directions.

About Dr. Thom: Dr. Thom received his MD and PhD (microbial physiology) degrees from the University of Rochester in 1981. He served as professor of emergency medicine and chief of hyperbaric medicine at the University of Pennsylvania for 27 years and in July 2013 took a position at University of Maryland. He is a practicing emergency medicine physician and also carries out research in several areas. He is lead/senior author on over 130 peer reviewed papers and 40 reviews or textbook chapters on oxygen and other gas toxicities. Research interests include the role of stem cells in diabetic wound healing and cell responses to hyperoxia, pathophysiology of decompression sickness, carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide (CO). His lab group was the first to describe vasculogenic stem cell mobilization by hyperbaric oxygen therapy and he currently directs projects to assess the role of stem cells in diabetic skin wound healing. He was president of the UHMS from 1996-1998, and chair of the hyperbaric oxygen therapy committee from 1991-1993.  Dr. Thom has been the recipient of the Albert R. Behnke award of the UHMS in 1996 and 2008, the Paul Bert award from UHMS in 2007, the Edgar End award of the Gulf Coast Chapter of the UHMS in 1988, and the C. Longoni award from the Italian Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society in 1998.

4:30-5:00: Research topics that need to be done for our field
John Feldmeier, MD