Whole Body Hyperthermia?
What is Whole Body Hyperthermia?
It is the process of heating the whole body, in the temperature ranges of 39 to 43°C. The representative use of the therapy is to treat metastatic cancer. It is a non-invasive treatment. It has been used by ancient Greeks and Egyptians. In this therapy, the temperature of the body rises just like a fever. As a result, the immune system’s activity gets enhanced. Cellular uptake of the administered drugs can also be increased.
Why is Whole Body Hyperthermia Important?
It is important because of its non-invasive nature and very less possible harm. It has a range of beneficial impacts on the body, when performed properly, with controlled temperatures. Some of them include decrease in the pain, enhancement of intravenous therapies, stimulation of self-healing process, blood flow increase, medication’s delivery improvement, and increased oxygen supply to tumor cells to enhance the effectiveness of radiation therapy. It is not a sole therapy, but enhances the effectiveness of the other therapy, when coupled with chemotherapy, radiotherapy or any other treatment.
Who should do Whole Body Hyperthermia?
Cancer patients can use it as an immune modulator. Many studies have recognized its role in the treatment of cancer. This can induce the heat shock proteins (HSP), which will be then released from tumor cells. Dendritic cells recognize the HSP’s and selectively attack on the tumor cells. The people using any intravenous therapy may opt for this, to enhance the effectiveness. The patients planning to undergo chemotherapy or radiotherapy, must opt to couple it with WBH, to enhance the treatment efficacy.
What science says about it?
According to some researchers, in comparison to placebo, even a single session of WBH, can be a rapid and safe treatment of depression. Many studies have been done on humans and animals. Apoptosis of malignant cells, and decrease of viral load in HCV and HIV infected patients, was observed. When coupled with chemotherapy, lower doses of chemicals were found effective. This therapy also has immunomodulating effects.
No harm according to medical research
Moderate temperatures are safe to use. Medical research has shown some complications, when the temperatures in the range of 41.8 to 42°C were used. Those may include brain edema, thermal shock, disseminated coagulation (intravascular), and hepato-renal syndrome. Even with the normal temperature, mild side effects may appear. They include Nausea, Vomiting, Diarrhea, and Anxiety.