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It was proved that hydrogen (H2) treatment, consisting of loading with H2 under high pressure and immediate pre-irradiation up to dose values ≥ 104 Gy considerably increases the radiation hardness of optical fibers with a pure SiO2 core, especially of those with a low OH content. These fibers even show a reduction of their initial attenuation at wavelengths < 700 nm, in contrast to a significant increase between 1200 and 1600 nm (growth of OH absorption bands). Therefore, H2 treatment should be restricted to fiber applications in the visible wavelength range, up to about 850 nm. A treatment with highly enriched deuterium should extend the usefulness to wavelengths around 1300 nm.