Infrared-mediated hyperthermia is effective in the treatment of scleroderma-associated Raynaud's phenomenon

John Foerster, Susanne Fleischanderl, Stefan Wittstock, Annegret Storch, Hans Meffert, Gabriela Riemekasten, Margitta Worm

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    15 Citations (Scopus)


    To the Editor: Scleroderma is a systemic autoimmune disease featuring variable organ involvement as well as Raynaud's phenomenon (RP). To date, no studies exist on the effect of systemic body temperature elevation on the severity of RP. Water-filtered near-infrared (infrared A (IRA)) irradiation is particularly effective in transdermal heat delivery (Meffert and Sonnichsen, 1974;Meffert et al, 1989;Meffert and Meffert, 2000). Prompted by preliminary findings (Meffert et al, 1990), we here examined the effect of IRA treatment on RP. We employed fingertip rewarming in response to cold challenge (Wise et al, 2004;Foerster et al, in press) as well as a clinical activity score (Merkel et al, 2002) as outcome variables. In addition, we explored the effect of IRA treatment on skin thickness and scleroderma-associated joint pain. Methods, a study flow chart, as well as immediate effects of IRA treatment are detailed in the online supplement. Because of the specified inclusion criteria (see Tables S1–S3), patients were in stable-disease phase.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1313-1316
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2005


    • Infrared radiation
    • Hyperthermia
    • Raynaud Disease therapy
    • Scleroderma


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