Oxygen consumption during hyperoxia

Administration of HBO increases oxygen delivery, which could hypothetically favour an augmentation of oxygen consumption and a better coverage of the metabolic demands in conditions of oxygen-supply dependence. This hypothesis seems consistent with the findings of Welch15 showing that normobaric hyperoxia (NBO) improves performance in exercising subjects. In contrast, several authors16'17 have observed a decrease of VO2 with NBO. The VO2 response to NBO reported so far is not uniform and not comparable due to differing study designs and methods of measurement. Above all, the response to HBO has to be judged in context with the basic condition of the subject: conditions of oxygen-supply independence (healthy subject at rest), conditions of oxygen-supply dependence in health (exercise) and in disease (shock state). Apart from the effect of hyperbaric oxygen as a drug, the effect of the altered physical properties (i.e., pressure) of the inspired gas on VO2 has to be considered.

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