Water bath hyperthermia is a simple therapy for psoriasis and also stimulates skin tanning in response to sunlight
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An eight week trial, involving superficial hyperthermia delivered biweekly via simple water bath immersion, was tested for its ability to clear mild to moderate psoriatic lesions. Seven patients were treated and three cases rapidly improved. In the remaining patients, the treatment frequency was increased to alternate days; two cases improved significantly, one patient showed a partial response, and the fourth had no visible change (this was the only patient taking concurrent drug therapy--etretinate). In addition to resolving psoriatic lesions, water bath hyperthermia also reduced edema (swelling) and relieved pruritus (itching) in all patients, both during the treatment period and for up to several months after lesions had returned. Lesion reappearance occurred within one to three months after the last heat treatment. We retreated one patient and produced a second complete remission. These results indicate that simple repetitive water bath hyperthermia alone is effective in the treatment of psoriatic lesions in heatable locations. An unexpected side effect was enhanced melanin content (tanning) in all areas where hyperthermia treated skin was exposed to sunlight.
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