Paul-Schmidt-Klinik

Whole body hyperthermia in pain therapy. A controlled trial on patients with fibromyalgia

Walz J., Hinzmann J., Haase I., Witte T.

Background:

The aim of this study was to evaluate whether mild water-filtered near infrared whole body hyperthermia in patients with fibromyalgia produces a benefit when applied as an addition to a standard multimodal rehabilitation.

Patients and methods:

In this study 67 patients at a German rehabilitation clinic were included and allocated to 3 study groups: the 2 intervention groups received additional mild water-filtered near infrared whole body hyperthermia once or twice a week over 3 weeks and the control group received only standard multimodal rehabilitation. Main outcome measure was pain intensity measured at baseline, discharge from the rehabilitation clinic and 6 months after discharge.

Results:

Additional mild water-filtered near infrared whole body hyperthermia once a week proved to be significantly better than the second hyperthermia group and the control group with respect to pain reduction and affective sense of pain. Furthermore, hyperthermia once a week tended to result in better outcome regarding fibromyalgia-related quality of life and depression.

Conclusions:

There is evidence that mild water-filtered near infrared whole body hyperthermia is a reasonable complement to multimodal rehabilitation in the treatment of fibromyalgia.