Preoperative and postoperative administration of hyperbaric oxygen improves biochemical and mechanical parameters on ischemic and normal colonic anastomoses

J Invest Surg. 2006 Jul-Aug;19(4):237-44. doi: 10.1080/08941930600778230.


Colonic anastomotic leaks are a major postoperative complication, causing increased mortality and morbidity. Tissue ischemia is one of the most important factors that disrupt anastomotic healing. It is possible to reverse inadequate tissue oxygenation by using increased atmospheric pressure and hyperoxia, which are obtained from hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBO). Our aim was to investigate the effects of preoperative and postoperative HBO treatment on normal and ischemic colonic anastomoses in rats. Eighty male Wistar Albino rats, weighing between 180 and 240 g, were divided into 8 equal groups. A 1-cm segment of left colon was resected 3 cm proximal to the peritoneal reflection in all groups and colonic anastomosis was performed. In groups 2, 4, 6 and 8, colonic ischemia was established by ligating 2 cm of mesocolon on either side of the anastomosis. Control groups (1 and 2) received no HBO. HBO treatment was given preoperatively in groups 3 and 4, postoperatively in groups 5 and 6, and both preoperatively and postoperatively in groups 7 and 8. HBO treatment was applied for 2 days in the preoperative period and 4 days in the postoperative period. Relaparotomy was performed on postoperative day 5 and a perianastomotic colon segment 2 cm in length was excised for detection of biochemical and mechanical parameters of anastomotic healing and histopathological evaluation. HBO treatment increased tissue hydroxyproline levels in all groups, and this difference was significant in normal anastomosis groups receiving preoperative HBO compared to controls (p = .013 for group 1 vs. group 3; p = .023 for group 1 vs. group 5). This improvement was more evident in ischemic and normal groups treated by administration of combined pre- and postoperative HBO (p = .021 and p = .013). HBO treatment also increased the mean bursting pressure values in all groups, and again, a statistically significant increase was noted in the ischemic groups compared to controls (p = .002 for group 2 vs. group 6; p = .001 for group 2 vs. group 8). Histopathological evaluation of anastomotic line fibrosis was not found to show significant differences between the groups. Adequate tissue oxygenation is the main factor in wound and anastomosis healing. HBO treatment has a positive effect on biochemical and mechanical parameters of ischemic and normal colon anastomoses in rats. It is possible to see this effect more clearly with combined HBO treatment applied before and after ischemic anastomosis.

MeSH terms

  • Anastomosis, Surgical* / methods
  • Animals
  • Colon / blood supply
  • Colon / surgery*
  • Hydroxyproline / metabolism
  • Hyperbaric Oxygenation*
  • Ischemia / therapy
  • Male
  • Postoperative Care / methods*
  • Preoperative Care / methods*
  • Pressure
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Stress, Mechanical


  • Hydroxyproline