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OXYGEN OZONE THERAPY: WHAT IT IS AND HOW IT WORKS.

Specialized Oxygen Ozone Clinics in Milan

WHAT IS OZONE THERAPY?

It is a medical therapy that uses a gaseous mixture made up of oxygen and ozone as a therapeutic agent. Ozone is a three-atom form of oxygen that is very unstable and therefore must be administered very quickly from the moment it is created.
The Oxygen Ozone blend has important therapeutic benefits.

WHAT KIND OF THERAPEUTIC BENEFITS?

Ozone therapy has several therapeutic benefits including:

  • Anti-inflammatory

  • Painkiller

  • Bactericidal

  • Virus-static

  • Immunomodulatory

  • Muscle relaxant 

  • Energizing

  • Detoxifying

  • Anti-Age

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How does Ozone work in musculoskeletal pathologies?

Ozone therapy has different methods of administration for the treatment of musculoskeletal pathologies. Depending on the method with which the therapy is carried out, the oxygen-ozone mixture has different mechanisms of action. Let's see them together.

 

Discolysis: an effective treatment for reducing herniated discs

In the context of herniated discs, ozone therapy has proven to be a valid treatment option.

Specifically, its mechanism of action can allow a reduction of herniated discs, since:

  • dissolving in the interstitial water, ozone reacts with the molecules present generating free radicals (ROS), which mainly consist of H2O2.

  • These free radicals act directly on the proteoglycans of the nucleus pulposus, breaking their long chains and starting a process of volumetric reduction of the hernia.

  • This phenomenon not only relieves compression on the nervous structures, but also lowers axonal sensitivity, reducing the irritative matrix.

  • Ozone also demonstrates an anti-inflammatory action within the intraforaminal space, further contributing to the reduction of the hernia and the consequent symptomatic improvement.

This approach offers a non-surgical treatment route for herniated discs, revolutionizing the way these conditions are treated. 

 

Paravertebral injection with ozone: rapid pain relief with long-term effects

Paravertebral injection of an oxygen-ozone mixture represents an important development in the management of musculoskeletal pain. Specifically, this treatment option involves rapid pain relief, which with repeated therapy has notable long-term results.

Its mechanism of action in detail:

  • in the first instance the needle stimulates complex chemical and neurological reactions, leading to a rapid reduction in pain in a notable percentage of cases (70-80%).

  • The ozone then dissolves in the muscle interstitium, generating free radicals (ROS), which are responsible for stimulating local C nociceptors. The latter could cause temporary and bearable pain in the patient, which is significantly reduced if the injection is carried out very slowly. It is important to remember that with repeated treatments a long-lasting analgesic effect is obtained.

 

Intra-articular administration: rapid relief for pain

In the context of musculoskeletal pathologies, intra-articular administration of ozone has proven to be highly effective. The action of ozone is activated on the patient's local nociceptors, triggering an effective and immediate response to pain. In fact, this procedure offers:

  • quick pain relief

  • a restoration of mobility

  • a reduction in periarticular edema.

Several studies have validated the mechanism of action of ozone for this type in pathologies, specifically during the intra-articular administration of the mixture in the knee, hip and lumbar area, using strategic landmarks. In particular:

  • ozone has the ability to dissolve in synovial fluid, which contains proteins, Vitamin E and other antioxidants (such as GSH, SOD and PUFA).

  • Lipid Peroxidation Products (LOP) and free radicals (ROS) are then generated, the formation of which involves:

    • inhibition of the release of proinflammatory cytokines and proteolytic enzymes;

    • the release of antioxidant enzymes (SOD, Catalase and GSH-P) and immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory cytokines, modulating the response to chronic oxidative stress and promoting tissue repair;

    • the induction of the proliferation of fibroblasts and chondrocytes essential for the maintenance of joint tissue.

 

Systemic administration of oxygen and ozone for muscular and skeletal diseases

For those who have widespread diseases of the spine, generalized pain in multiple body sites, it is not possible to distribute the ozone in a localized way, given the vastness of the sites to be reached.

In this case it is possible to proceed by bringing the ozone to all areas of the body, with systemic administration, and possibly intensifying the action of the ozone with a local treatment in the most painful areas.

Here ozone acts as a generalized anti-inflammatory.

The two possible methods of administering ozone at a systemic level for musculoskeletal problems are:

The action of ozone in the human body

Ozone is an unstable molecule and when it comes into contact with the blood and the human body it tends to produce oxidizing substances.

These in turn activate antioxidant chemical reactions in our body, whose action is prolonged over time, producing important beneficial effects.

 

What happens to the blood duringozone therapy?

During the ozone therapy session, both oxygen and ozone dissolve in the plasma, depending on various factors such as:

  • temperature

  • pressure

  • solubility.

While oxygen tries to establish an equilibrium between the gas phase and the plasma, ozone, which is ten times more soluble, cannot reach an equilibrium. This is because it reacts instantly with biomolecules such as PUFA and antioxidants present in the plasma, and is completely consumed. This reaction produces lipid oxidation products (LOPs) and hydrogen peroxide (among other possible ROS), which we can call ozone metabolites.

Subsequently increasing the concentration of hydrogen peroxide creates a gradient that leads to rapid transfer into blood cells, where it activates numerous biochemical processes. At the same time, hydrogen peroxide is converted into water by an efficient intracellular antioxidant system. This crucial phase corresponds to a light, controlled, acute and temporary oxidative stress, which is necessary for biological activation. Therefore, a concomitant toxic concentration is not caused, provided that the dose of ozone is compatible with the antioxidant capacity of the blood, which is significantly higher than that induced.

 

Interaction between ozone and blood: key points

In conclusion, the interaction between ozone and blood reveals a complex network of mechanisms that are fundamental to understanding the therapeutic efficacy of ozone in the treatment of pathologies related to chronic oxidative stress. These mechanisms focus on the balance between ozone, antioxidants and other blood components, and it is essential to maintain a balance between them to achieve effective therapeutic results without causing harm to the body.

OZONE THERAPY IN THE WORLD

Di seguito vedremo una panoramica generale delle modalità in cui l’ozonoterapia è regolamentata nel mondo.

 

Ozonoterapia in Europa

In diversi paesi europei l’ozonoterapia è ampiamente utilizzata e regolamentata da leggi e normative specifiche. Eccone alcuni:

Italia: è ampiamente accettata e regolamentata. Ad esempio in Lombardia è stata regolarizzata nel 2003, nelle Marche nel 2009, in Emilia-Romagna nel 2007, nel Lazio il Tribunale Amministrativo ha pronunciato diverse sentenze favorevoli nel 1996 e nel 2003.

Grecia: leggi specifiche sull’utilizzo di questa terapia sono state rilasciate nel 1991 e nel 2014.

Ucraina: anche in questo paese l’ozonoterapia è stata regolarizzata nel 2001 e nel 2014.

Spagna: in quindici comunità autonome sono state pronunciate normative favorevoli a questa terapia tra il 2007 e il 2012. Nel settore della sanità pubblica viene inoltre utilizzata in venti centri per il trattamento del dolore.

Portogallo: l’ozonoterapia è stata regolarizzata tra il 2013 e il 2018.

Germania: questa terapia è ampiamente utilizzata e regolamentata da leggi e normative specifiche.

Russia: normative specifiche al suo utilizzo sono state emesse nel 2005 e nel 2007.

 

Ozonoterapia negli altri paesi del mondo

In linea generale anche in molti altri paesi nel mondo l’ozonoterapia è praticata in modo diffuso. Vediamone alcuni nel dettaglio:

Stati Uniti: l’ozonoterapia è generalmente considerata una terapia sperimentale. Non è ampiamente accettata dalla comunità medica e non è regolamentata in modo coerente a livello federale. Gli studi clinici controllati sull’efficacia e sulla sicurezza dell’ozonoterapia sono limitati, e l’uso di questa terapia è meno comune rispetto ad altri paesi.

Canada: è considerata una terapia complementare o alternativa e non è ampiamente regolamentata o accettata dalla comunità medica convenzionale.

Cuba: regolamentata nel 2009 e nel 2015, è praticata come parte della medicina tradizionale.

Oman: leggi specifiche hanno regolarizzato questa terapia nel 2010.

Emirato di Dubai: è stata regolamentata nel 2011.

Brasile: per quanto riguarda l’odontoiatria questa terapia è stata regolarizzata nel 2015, mentre nella sanità pubblica nel 2018.

Messico: leggi specifiche sono state pronunciate nello stato di Nueva León nel 2018.

Cina: è utilizzata in alcuni ospedali e strutture mediche, la sua regolamentazione è stata ufficializzata nel 2005.

Turchia: norme sulla regolarizzazione dell’ozonoterapia sono state pronunciate nel 2014.

 

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