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Osteoarthritis and Applications of Heat and Cold

Written by sshowalter.

Effect of Applications of Heat and Cold on Osteoarthritis

Application of Heat

Heat improves blood circulation to the affected area. Applying heat via warm soaks, paraffin, or heating pads can be very soothing. Most recommend that you apply the heat for about ten minutes at a time, 3-4 times a day.

Application of Cold

Cold can help decrease inflammation in an affected joint, relieving pain, and improving stiffness and movement. Apply an ice pack for 20-30 minutes

Read more details about Applications of Heat and Cold.

Research Evidence on Applications of Heat and Cold

Hot water therapy, also known as balneotherapy, has been tested as a treatment for osteoarthritis with some promise. 176-180

In recent centuries, the use of hot springs and water in other forms was popularized by early practitioners of what later would become naturopathy.

References

Arthritis Foundation website. Available at: http://www.arthritis.org/ .

Conn’s Current Therapy . 54th edition. W.B. Saunders Company; 2002.

Manek NJ, Lane NE. Osteoarthritis: current concepts in diagnosis and management. American Family Physician . 2000;51(6). Available at: http://www.aafp.org/afp/20000315/1795.html.

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/ . Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. InteliHealth website. Available at: http://www.intelih... . Updated May 2008. Accessed December 11, 2009.

12/11/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php : Rutjes WJ, Nuesch E, Sterchi R, et al. Transcutaneous electrostimulation for osteoarthritis of the knee. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009;(4):CD002823.

10/15/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php: Wandel S, Jüni P, Tendal B, et al. Effects of glucosamine, chondroitin, or placebo in patients with osteoarthritis of hip or knee: network meta-analysis. BMJ. 2010;341:c4675.

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  1. Tishler M, Rosenberg O, Levy O, et al. The effect of balneotherapy on osteoarthritis. Is an intermittent regimen effective? Eur J Intern Med. 2004;15:93-96.
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