Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Study Shows Benefit of Low-Level Heat for Treating Wrist Pain

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Study Shows Benefit of Low-Level Heat for Treating Wrist Pain

Article excerpt

A new research study published in the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation showed significant benefits of continuous low-level heat therapy for short-term relief of wrist pain caused by common conditions such as osteoarthritis, tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome.

In all treated patients in the study, researchers noted significant benefits of heat therapy on multiple symptoms of wrist pain.

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"Our study demonstrated that low-level heat wrap therapy reduced pain by 46 percent in patients with wrist pain caused by common and well-studied conditions such as sprains, strains, tendonitis, osteoarthritis and other common forms of wrist pain due to occupational activities," said Susan Michlovitz, PT, Ph.D., CHT, the study's lead author, and a professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at Temple University in Philadelphia.

In addition to measuring the impact of low-level heat wrap therapy on wrist pain, the study also evaluated changes in joint stiffness and grip strength. Treated patients reported a significantly greater increase in grip strength, while significantly greater reduction in joint stiffness was only observed among the patients whose symptoms were consistent with wrist pain from occupational activities. …

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