At a glance:
IV ozone therapy is the administration of pure medical ozone gas intravenously. While it is used in hundreds of thousands of patients every year, it is not yet FDA approved and therefore receives controversy, despite having over 2,000 medical studies.
First, a small amount of blood is withdrawn from the patient and into a bag premixed with saline and heparin. Then, ozone gas is infused into the bag with the blood. Lastly, it is infused back into the vein. The entire process takes about 45 minutes.
IV ozone therapy is often called major autohemotherapy or MaH.
Ozone therapy stimulates the body toward homeostasis by creating a mild, acute oxidative stress and activates the NRF2 pathway (the same pathway activated during exercise and fasting). Among many mechanisms of action, ozone therapy is able to increase the body’s natural antioxidant production, enhance oxygen metabolism, and modulate the immune system.
Simply put, ozone is stimulating the body to balance and optimize important systems, such as the immune system, energy systems, blood circulation, and more. This leads to a cascade of benefits and why clinicians use it in a variety of diseases or athletic enhancement.
Other Purported Benefits of Ozone Therapy
What the patient experiences
Ozone therapy has many uses because of its fundamental improvement of systems in the body.
In the same line of thought, how many diseases can exercise improve? Nearly all. Although it’s not a fair comparison, as nothing will ever replace the need and benefit of exercise, ozone therapy stands on a similar principle.
Ozone therapy works with fundamental systems in the body. When you look at the research, it almost looks intelligent. In one study, they looked at patients with hypoxic portions of the brain. The group of patients that did ozone therapy had an improvement of blood flow and oxygen delivery to the parts of the brain that needed it, but not the others. Similarly, other studies have observed ozone therapies ability to calm the immune system down if it’s overactive or boost the immune system if it’s underperforming.
Well, it’s not the ozone. It’s YOUR body that knows what it needs. Ozone therapy acts as the catalyst to enact the intelligence of your body, thereby appearing intelligent. This therapeutic agent is used in so many conditions because it enacts the intelligence of your body and gets your systems to optimize or function correctly.
These are common reasons IV ozone therapy is used:
Two good studies have been conducted to show the effects of IV ozone therapy for athletes.
The first study included two groups of semi-pro soccer players in Turkey. The aim of the study was to observe the effects of IV ozone therapy on Vo2 max, indicating endurance and energy.
One group received IV ozone therapy and the other group did not.
Here is what the study found,
“The difference in performance increase was found significant between football players who were treated and not treated with ozone therapy. All athletes performed the same training program for 8 weeks. VO2max was increased 28% in ozone therapy-treated athletes but it was increased 12% in the control group. Max running time was increased 20% in ozone therapy-treated athletes, and it was increased 6% in the control group. In terms of these results, we can say that ozone therapy will be very effective for increasing athletic performance before season or tournaments.”
As you can see, IV ozone produced a significant improvement in Vo2 max over a short 8 week period. While 28% improvement doesn’t seem like a lot, in young, professional athletes this is a substantial increase and should be cause for consideration of all athletes.
Another study done looked at a similar response. They observed the effects of ozone therapy on anaerobic threshold, indicating oxygen efficiency. Someone with a higher anaerobic threshold uses and delivers oxygen to create energy more effectively.
Here is what they found,
“The fact that a cycle of MAHT had an effect on AT is further evidence of how oxygen-ozone
therapy interacts at several levels. On the one hand the treatment allows the aerobic reserve to be fully exploited by boosting metabolism; on the other it ensures enhanced peripheral delivery of oxygen also by virtue of its effect on erythrocyte 2,3-diphosphoglycerate… In addition to a subjective feeling of well-being and “lightness in the legs”, our athletes had much shorter recovery times. This could be due to both the raised AT and the frequent drop in heart rate during exercise.”
This study indicates that ozone therapy may have a significant impact on athletes:
They did note in these studies that athletes typically feel more tired the day after an IV ozone treatment. This is why athletes should NOT do IV ozone within two days of an important athletic event or game.
It seems that the research on ozone therapy strongly indicates that it improves overall quality of life and helps with toxic side effects of conventional treatments. More clinical research is needed in other areas on cancer to verify just how helpful it is, with which method, and how much should be done. It certainly does appear to be safe and not cause any additional harm based on the research above.
Doctors and patients will have more robust stories on their experiences with cancer and ozone therapy. Mostly because they are not confined to the progress of research on a non-money making therapy.
If you are doing or considering chemotherapy, ozone therapy has been researched to reduce the toxicity of chemotherapy.
A review on the use of ozone therapy in adjunct with chemotherapy states the following:
“Ozone therapy can induce a controlled oxidative stress able to stimulate an adaptive antioxidant response in healthy tissue. This review describes the studies using ozone therapy to prevent and/or treat chemotherapy-induced toxicity… In vitro and animal studies, as well as isolated clinical reports, suggest the potential role of ozone as an adjuvant during radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy.”
In other words, they found ozone therapy reduced the toxicity of the chemotherapy undergone by the patient. It did this by keeping the cells healthy through increasing antioxidant production.
In the image above, it shows ozone therapy as a preconditioning agent for chemotherapy by improving antioxidant markers. Studies show that this will significantly improve quality of life for those undergoing chemo.
On the same note, another study found:
“Patients with prostatic cancer were treated with cobalt-60 therapy and ozone (rectally), decreasing the presence of side effects (due to radiation treatment) and the prostatic specific antigen figures… In spite of the positive ozone biological effects, its potential usefulness as an adjuvant in chemo-radiotherapy and its antimetastatic effect
And this was verified under yet another study, that stated:
“modulation of free radicals and antioxidants by ozone therapy was associated with decreased chemotherapy-induced toxicity.”
One study observed a high percentage of cancer patients significantly reduced fatigue with the use of ozone therapy:
“Fatigue may be cause by all cancer treatments, maybe because the tissue damage or the build-up of dead cells derived products…Patients were treated with Auto Hemotransfusion (GAE) according to the SIOOT (Scientific Society of Oxygen Ozone Therapy) protocols…No side effects were found, and 35 patients (70%) achieved a significant improvement (> 50%) of the symptoms.”
Essentially, it reduces the negative side effects of chemotherapy and helps the body to maintain a healthier terrain. So the patient experiences a better quality of life with ozone therapy.
Transcranial Doppler and carotid ultrasound studies have demonstrated significant increases in systolic and diastolic velocities in the middle cerebral artery (MCA) and a substantial rise in blood flow in the common carotid artery (CCA) following ozone therapy. These findings suggest reduced vascular resistance and enhanced cerebral perfusion, which are essential for optimal brain function.
Ozone therapy mitigated the vasoconstrictive effects induced hypoxia and allowed for proper blood flow and oxygen delivery.
Studies have indicated that older individuals and those with lower baseline blood flow may experience more pronounced positive effects from ozone therapy, potentially making it an option for cerebral blood flow issues and stroke.
One patient, named Amber, lost her ability to speak and became paralyzed from a stroke. She gained those functions back after ozone therapy.
Ozone therapy has a number of positive effects on the body. This review study details the biochemical effects of IV ozone:
As an example for one of the parameters affected by ozone, here is a list of clinical trials that are currently being run to identify ozone’s ability to improve circulation and blood flow.
We have put together a comprehensive safety review of ozone therapy that looks at all forms of literature on the subject, both positive and negative. You can read the safety review on ozone therapy here.
Ozone therapy safety is a concern to people because conventional medicine says, “ozone therapy is a scam” or “ozone therapy is toxic and dangerous”.
However, it’s usually rooted in a lack of knowledge around the subject. People don’t say this because they hold an in depth knowledge around the science of ozone therapy. Usually they are making a sweeping judgment based on their paradigm.
There are a few out there who have “debunked” ozone therapy using straw man arguments. For example, a YouTuber chemist “debunked” ozone therapy using the classic straw man argument, propping up an illegitimate source of information, in order to debunk it. This is akin to me saying, “I’m the best basketball player in the country” then proceed to play a 3 year old in a game of basketball to prove my point.
A legitimate area of concern is breathing large amounts of ozone gas. It is well accepted by both ozone therapists and conventional practitioners that ozone cannot be breathed.
Why can ozone be used in blood or other parts of the body if it cannot be breathed?
Dr. Bocci established the scientific understanding of how ozone can be safely applied. When ozone is infused into the blood, colon, or other areas used for ozone therapy, it interacts directly with the antioxidant system. Your body is protected against the oxidative properties of ozone and cascades into the other benefits elicited by the treatment.
Insert demonstration graphic (ozone cannot be breathed into lung. No antioxidants. It can be applied to other parts of the body where antioxidants are present.
A report was conducted by the World Federation of Ozone Therapy. They evaluated over 300,000 ozone therapy treatments. In the report, they found that ozone therapy had an adverse event rate of 6 out of 100,000 treatments. All of which were minor.
Ozone therapy has a higher safety record than the use of aspirin.
The vast minority of people experience a negative side effect.
The most notable negative side effect of ozone therapy is the Herxheimer reaction. A Herxheimer reaction happens when the patient has an immune system burdened with viral, bacterial, or fungal infections. Ozone therapy stimulates the immune system. Then the immune system kills off lots of pathogens, creating a rapid release of endotoxins from the dead pathogens. This can make people feel sick if it happens too quickly.
The largest IV ozone therapy risk is a Herxheimer reaction. This is not comfortable and can make the patient feel tired or sick for a few days.
Herxheimer symptoms include:
However, it’s avoidable by starting on a lower dose for immune burdened patients to lower ozone therapy risk. The dose can be increased as tolerated by the patient until the standard dose is reached.
It is not uncommon for a chronically sick patient to feel worse after the first 2 - 4 treatments, then start to feel immensely better for treatments thereafter.
There are other potential negative side effects of ozone therapy outside of a herxheimer reaction:
Ozone is a strong oxidant. Saline bags are made of plastics that break down in exposure to ozone. You CANNOT inject ozone into a saline bag without blood. The blood MUST be present in the bag prior to infusing the ozone.
The reason is because ozone interacts instantaneously with the blood and breaks down into it’s subproperties immediately, due to the robust antioxidant system. However, if only saline is in the bag, ozone does not readily bond with the saline and stays in the bag. Ozone, being a strong oxidant, then oxidizes the bag and produces microplastics, which would then be infused into the patient.
Most doctors are using saline bags in IV ozone therapy but the blood must be present within the bag prior to infusing ozone gas.
Ozone therapy cost is generally in the $150 - $300 per treatment. Five to ten sessions are often prescribed. But pricing can vary based on the clinic and location.
IV ozone cost can also vary on the protocol, add-ons, packaging, and form of ozone therapy.
The practitioner will generally spend around $10,000 for getting started with ozone therapy. This includes the equipment and training. Medical practitioners can join a free training call with an IV ozone nurse by clicking here.
Yes, there is hands on training on ozone therapy for medical practitioners. You can find it here.
The literature on IV ozone therapy is quite expansive though much of it is summarized in this book. You will see many protocols mentioned such as EBOO, 10 Pass, HiDose and more. The protocol we use, Major autohemotherapy with 150-300mL of blood, has by far the most research and is the most tried and true method of ozone therapy.
It’s backed by 500+ studies and honed over decades. In consideration of all the different IV ozone protocols, this one has the most evidence of safety and effectiveness.
This protocol minimizes costs by using existing supplies, maximizing your clinic's efficiency and profitability. So there is less expense for the clinic and the patient while still giving the best protocol available.
Frequency / Titration
Recommended Reference Guide for Dosing and Frequency
**Follow up titration dosing in order of visits. Increase Gamma Dose by 5-10 with each subsequent IV Ozone treatment to a max of 70 Gamma
F/U- Follow Up
qoM- Every other Month
1/M- One per Month
CP- Chronic Pathogen
Image Source: Zotero