Home > Evidence

Evidence of the benefits of FAR Infrared Therapy as a clinical modality to help relieve pain, assist rehabilitation and aid healing.

 

 

FAR Infrared treatment leads to a 57% decrease in pain for patients with 6 year chronic low back pain.

 

Forty patients with chronic low back pain of over six years' duration.  Mean NRS scores in the FIR treatment group fell from 6.9 of 10 to 3 of 10 at the end of the study.  The mean NRS in the placebo group fell from 7.4 of 10 to 6 of 10.  The FIR therapy unit used was demonstrated to be effective in reducing chronic low back pain, and no adverse effects were observed

 

Gale GD, Rothbart PJ, Li Y. Infrared therapy for chronic low back pain: a randomized, controlled trial. Pain Research and Management 2006,11(3):193-196

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2539004/

 

 

FIR therapy leads to greater collagen regeneration and infiltration of fibroblasts.

 

Experiment examining the role of infrared in wound healing.  Histological findings revealed greater collagen regeneration and infiltration of fibroblasts that expressed transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) in wounds in the FIR group than in the group without FIR.  Stimulation of the secretion of TGF-β1 or the activation of fibroblasts may be considered as a possible mechanism for the promotive effect of FIR on wound healing independent of skin blood flow and skin temperature.

 

Toyokawa H, Matsui Y, Uhara J, Tsuchiya H, Teshima S, Nakanishi H, Kwon AH, Azuma Y, Nagaoka T, Ogawa T, Kamiyama Y. Promotive effects of far-infrared ray on full-thickness skin wound healing in rats.   Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2003 Jun;228(6):724-9.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12773705

 

 

Thermedic FAR Infrared increases blood flow in the knee by 203.6% and rate of blood flow by 89.6%

 

Measurements taken using Laser Blood Flow Instrument, Moor MBF 3D & MSR Signal Recorder MSR-5.

Taiwan Textile Research Institute, November 2009

 

 

FAR Infrared Therapy reduces pain after Total Knee Arthroplasty

 

This study demonstrated that the FIR can lower the NRS of pain and thus reduce the discomfort experienced by the patient. Findings indicated that effective application of FIR decreased the serum level of Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Endothelin ET-1, which represent the subjective indicator of pain.

 

Endothelins are proteins that constrict blood vessels and raise blood pressure. They are normally kept in balance by other mechanisms, but when they are over-expressed, they contribute to high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart disease

 

Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is an interleukin that acts as both a pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokine. Expression of IL-6 is enhanced at the site of inflammation, and blockade of IL-6 and IL-6 signalling is effective at prevention and treatment in models of inflammatory diseases (including arthritis and colitis).  Overall IL-6 is important – indeed, critical under certain conditions – to the development of persistent inflammation. 

(C. Gabay Interleukin-6 and chronic inflammation  Arthritis Research & Therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 2):S3 http://arthritis-research.com/content/8/S2/S3

 

Ching H. Wong, Leou C. Lin, Hsieh H. Lee, and Chi-Feng Liu.  The Analgesic Effect of Thermal Therapy After Total Knee Arthroplasty  The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. February 2012, 18(2): 175-179. doi:10.1089/acm.2010.0815.

http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2010.0815

 

 

FAR Infrared reduces pain caused by Dysmenorrhea, increasing abdominal blood flow by 49% and causing SDNN to increase by 40%.

 

Effect of FIR on Pain: Treatment with FIR significantly decreased the participants’ ratings of their pain or suffering associated with dysmenorrhea.  NRS fell by 65% from 4.57±1.83 to 1.62±1.62 and VRS by 60%from 1.89±1.83 to 0.76±0.68.

 

Effect of FIR on Temperature: Average abdominal temperatures before and after FAR Infrared increased from 34.6 ± 1.2oC and 37.5oC.  Temperature increase was safe for skin and did not cause burns. 

Effect of FIR on Blood Flow: Blood flow measured to increase by 48.7±49.7%.

Effect of FIR on Physiological Signals: No significant change between, before and after treatment of blood pressure and respiration.  However, The Standard Deviation of Normal-to-Normal RR intervals in pulse waveforms increased significantly by 40.5%% from 69.2 ±42.2 ms before, to 97.2 ±72.8ms suggesting that the autonomic nervous system became more active with treatment.  It seems possible that FIR may help relieve pain by regulating the autonomic nervous system.

 

B.Y. Liau, A. Yang, T.K. Leung, M.C Ou, C.K. Ho and Y.S. Lin.  Inhibiting Effects of FAR-Infrared Ray-Emitting Belts on Primary Dysmenorrhea.  International Journal of Photoenergy, Volume 2012, Article ID 238468

http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijp/2012/238468/ 

 

 

Heat combined with exercise achieves better pain relief for acute back pain than exercise alone.

 

Combining continuous low-level heat wrap therapy with directional preference-based exercise during the treatment of acute low back pain significantly improves functional outcomes compared with either intervention alone or control. Either intervention alone tends to be more effective than control.

 

J. M. Mayer, L. Ralph,  M. Look, G. N. Erasala, J. L. Verna L. N. Matheson,  V. Mooney  Treating acute low back pain with continuous low-level heat wrap therapy and/or exercise: a randomized controlled trial.  The Spine JournalVolume 5, Issue 4 , Pages 395-403, July 2005

http://www.thespinejournalonline.com/article/S1529-9430(05)00116-6/abstract

 

 

Increased temperature leads to heat-related myofascial relaxation.

 

This study demonstrates that increased temperature leads to heat-related myofascial relaxation.

 

T. Muraoka, K. Omuro, T. Wakahara, T. Fukunaga, T. Fukunaga, K. Kanosue, Passive mechanical properties of the human muscle-tendon complex at different temperatures.  Journal of BiomechanicsVolume 39, Supplement 1 , Pages S197-S198, 2006

http://www.jbiomech.com/article/S0021-9290(06)83714-0/pdf

 

 

Continuous low level heat for acute Low Back Pain decreases pain, increases trunk flexibility and decreases muscle stiffness.

 

Randomized placebo controlled trial shows continuous low-level heatwrap therapy was provides significant therapeutic benefits in patients with acute non-specific LBP, as indicated by increased pain relief and trunk flexibility and it provided decreased muscle stiffness and disability when compared with placebo.

 

Nadler SF, Steiner DJ, Erasala GN, Hengehold DA, Abeln SB, Weingand KW. Continuous low level heat wrap therapy for treating acute non-specific low back pain. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2003; 84:329-34

http://www.cebp.nl/media/m607.pdf

 

 

Continuous low-level heat wrap therapy was superior to both acetaminophen and ibuprofen for treating low back pain.

 

To compare the efficacy of continuous low-level heat wrap therapy (40 C, 8 hours/day) with that of ibuprofen (1200 mg/day) and acetaminophen (4000 mg/day) in subjects with acute nonspecific low back pain. Continuous low-level heat wrap therapy was superior to both acetaminophen and ibuprofen for treating low back pain.

 

Nadler, Scott F. DO; Steiner, Deborah J. MD, MS; Erasala, Geetha N, David A. MHinkle, Robert T.; Beth Goodale, Mary BS‡; Abeln, Susan B. BS‡; Weingand, Kurt W. DVM, PhD.  Continuous Low-Level Heat Wrap Therapy Provides More Efficacy Than Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen for Acute Low Back Pain .  Spine 15 May 2002 - Volume 27 - Issue 10 - pp 1012-1017

http://journals.lww.com/spinejournal/Abstract/2002/05150/Continuous_Low_Level_Heat_Wrap_Therapy_Provides.3.aspx

 

 

Heat enhances the functional properties of skeletal muscle.

 

Experiment shows that increased temperature leads to an enhancement in the functional properties of skeletal muscle in terms of accelerated contraction and relaxation parameters.

 

W. Klingler, C. Schlegel, R. Schliep.  The Role of Fascia in Resting Muscle Tone and Heat Induced Relaxation.  Departments of Anesthesiology and Applied Physiology, Ulm University, Germany.2007

http://www.fasciacongress.org/2007/abstract_pdf/Klingler%20(54)%20-%20The%20Role%20of%20Fascia%20in%20Resting%20Muscle%20Tone%20and%20Heat%20Induced%20Relaxation.pdf

 

 

Heating ligaments increases their extensibility.

 

In the study ligaments expanded at higher temperatures resulting in an increase in extension over which they demonstrated an initial low stiffness characteristic.  Although temperature did not directly affect the response of the ligaments to load, the thermal expansion of the soft tissue elements may have implications for the function and mobility of spinal joints if measured at room rather than body temperature.

 

Hasberry S, Pearcy MJ. Temperature dependence of the tensile properties of interspinous ligaments of sheep. Journal of Biomedical Engineering 1986 Jan;8(1):62-6.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3951211

 

 

Applying moist heat to hamstrings increases hamstring flexibility.

 

The results of this study demonstrate that moist heat application provides significantly greater hamstring flexibility among collegiate football players than static stretching. Although the athletes are generally well conditioned, incorporating moist heat application into stretching and strengthening regimens may improve muscle and connective tissue fitness.

 

D. Funk, A. M. Swank, D. Treolo, K. J. Adams.  Efficacy of Moist Heat Pack Application Over

Static Stretching on Hamstring Flexibility.  Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2001, 15(1), 123–126

http://www.hawaii.edu/hivandaids/Efficacy%20of%20Moist%20Heat%20Pack%20Application%20Over%20Static%20Stretching%20on%20Hamstring%20Flexibility.pdf

 

 

Heat application before stretching could increase hamstring extensibility.

 

Heat application to the hamstrings before stretching could result in greater increase in extensibility than stretching alone in children with hypertonia and severe mental retardation.

 

L. GP, N GY.  Effects of stretching and heat treatment on hamstring extensibility in children with severe mental retardation and hypertonia.  Clinical Rehabilitation 2008 Sep;22(9):771-9.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18728130

 

 

FIR therapy exerts a potent anti-inflammatory effect in hemodialysis patients.

 

Results demonstrate that FIR therapy exerts a potent anti-inflammatory effect via the induction of HO-1. The ability of FIR therapy to inhibit inflammation may play a critical role in preserving blood flow and patency of AVFs in hemodialysis patients.

 

C. C Lin, X.M Liu, K. Peyton, H. Wang, W. C. Yang, S. J. Lin and W. Durante  Far Infrared Therapy Inhibits Vascular Endothelial Inflammation via the Induction of Heme Oxygenase-1

Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology. 2008; 28: 739-745

http://atvb.ahajournals.org/content/28/4/739.full.pdf+html

 

 

FIR induces anti-inflammatory effects by inhibiting prostaglandin (PGE-2) in SW1353 human chondrosarcoma. 

 

T. K. Leung, C. H. Chen, C. H. Lai et al., Bone and joint protection ability of ceramic material with biological effects.  Chinese Journal of Physiology, vol. 55, no. 1, pp. 47–54, 2012.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22242954

 

 

FIR therapy exerts a Nitric Oxide NO-related biological effect to increase skin microcirculation.

 

Findings suggested a non-thermic biological effect of FIR on skin microcirculation.  FIR therapy exerts a Nitric Oxide NO-related biological effect to increase skin microcirculation in rats. This might bring into perspective the clinical application of FIR to treat ischemic disease by augmenting L-arginine/NO pathway.

 

Yu SY, Chiu JH, Yang SD, Hsu YC, Lui WY, Wu CW Biological effect of far-infrared therapy on increasing skin microcirculation in rats. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed. 2006 Apr;22(2):78-86.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16606412

 

 

FIR therapy can improve Qa and survival of the AVF in HD patients through both its thermal and its nonthermal effects.

 

Lin CC, Chang CF, Lai MY, Chen TW, Lee PC, Yang WC. Far-infrared therapy: a novel treatment to improve access blood flow and unassisted patency of arteriovenous fistula in hemodialysis patients. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2007 Mar;18(3):985-92. Epub 2007 Jan 31.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17267744

 

 

First evidence to indicate the immunomodulatory properties of FIR through increasing Cam protein and NO production in RAW 264.7 macrophages

Investigated the effect of nonthermal-enhanced FIR on the expression of calmodulin (CaM) protein and nitric oxide (NO) production by RAW 264.7 macrophages. Results indicated a significant increase in Cam protein in FIR-treated RAW 264.7 macrophages with or without the addition of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). In addition, the amount of NO was slightly higher but increased significantly in FIR plus LPS-treated RAW 264.7 macrophages. Data of the present study provide the first evidence to indicate the immunomodulatory properties of FIR through increasing Cam protein and NO production in RAW 264.7 macrophages.

 

Notes:

Macrophages: Their role is to phagocytose, or engulf and then digest, cellular debris and pathogens, either as stationary or as mobile cells. They also stimulate lymphocytes and other immune cells to respond to pathogens

CaM mediates many crucial processes such as inflammation, metabolism, apoptosis, smooth muscle contraction, intracellular movement, short-term and long-term memory, and the immune response.

Nitric Oxide: NO is an important cellular signaling molecule involved in many physiological and pathological processes.[4] It is a powerful vasodilator with a short half-life of a few seconds in the blood.

 

Ting-Kai Leung et al Immunodulatory Effects of FAR Infrared Ray Irradiation Via Increasing Calmodulin and Nitric Oxide Production In Raw 264.7 Macrophages.  Biomedical Engineering: Applications, Basis and Communications,, Volume 21, Issue 05, October 2009
http://www.worldscientific.com/doi/abs/10.4015/S1016237209001404?journalCode=bme