One article on PainSci cites Petrofsky 2009: Icing, Heating & Tissue Temperature
original abstract †Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
The purpose of this study was to quantify the thermal transfer characteristics of the skin in relation to body composition as assessed by the ability of water immersion and hot and cold packs with different thicknesses of towels layers to heat or cool deep tissue. Two sets of experiments were conducted to determine the interrelationships between body fat content and muscle temperature after immersion of the limb in water or the application of hot and cold packs. In the first series of experiments, subjects immersed their lower body in water at 42, 37, 34, 27, 24 and 0 degrees C for 20 minutes. Muscle temperature was measured in the skin above and in the belly of the quadriceps and medial gastrocnemius muscles by a thermistor on the skin and one implanted with a 20-gauge needle 25 mm below and perpendicular to the skin. To see the effect of circulation, a series was conducted with the circulation occluded. In the second series, hot or cold packs were used with different thicknesses of towel layers. The muscle temperature after immersion in water approached that of the packs within approximately 20 minutes. In contrast, when hot and cold packs were used with various thickness of towels ranging from 2 to 10 mm in thickness, the change in muscle temperature was much less and it was still changing at the end of a 20 minute period. Subjects with high body fat changed their deep tissue temperatures much more slowly with a time constant nearly double that of the thin subjects with all modalities. Even after water immersion, if the body fat exceeded 25% of the subject's weight, 20 min of immersion was not enough to either warm the muscle or cool it down substantially. Cold packs and hot packs were very ineffective in changing muscle temperature under these same conditions. Body fat plays a major role, as did limb blood flow in controlling the movement of heat across the limb.
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- Association of Lumbar MRI Findings with Current and Future Back Pain in a Population-based Cohort Study. Kasch 2022 Spine (Phila Pa 1976).
- A double-blinded randomised controlled study of the value of sequential intravenous and oral magnesium therapy in patients with chronic low back pain with a neuropathic component. Yousef 2013 Anaesthesia.
- Is Neck Posture Subgroup in Late Adolescence a Risk Factor for Persistent Neck Pain in Young Adults? A Prospective Study. Richards 2021 Phys Ther.
- Sudden amnesia resulting in pain relief: the relationship between memory and pain. Choi 2007 Pain.
- Photobiomodulation therapy is not better than placebo in patients with chronic nonspecific low back pain: a randomised placebo-controlled trial. Guimarães 2021 Pain.