Introduction: Phytothermotherapy (PTT) is a singular treatment consisting in immersing oneself in pools of fermenting alpine grass, to exploit its heat and rich aromatic components. The efficacy of PTT in rheumatic diseases (RD) is bolstered by ancient tradition. However, there is a marked lack of clinical validation of its efficacy and tolerability in current literature. The objective of this review was to summarize the actually available knowledges on possible effects of PTT in RD. Methodology: We conducted a search of the literature in May 2012. Medline was searched using the term "phytothermotherapy" and "hay baths" in combination with "rheumatic diseases", "fibromyalgia syndrome", "osteoarthritis". Results: We identified one article reporting the clinical effects of PTT in 56 patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) and 3 trials describing the results of PTT in osteoarthritis (OA). The available data demonstrate that PTT is efficacy in decreasing pain and disability and improving function in patients with FMS and OA. Furthermore, the tolerability of PTT is excellent. The actual mechanism of action of PTT is yet not completely known, although it's probably due to different combined mechanical, physical and chemical effects. Discussion: PTT could represent a useful aid in the treatment of FMS and OA. However, further studies on a larger number of patients are needed to provide more precise therapeutic guidelines on the modalities of use of PTT. Additionally, there is a need for further botanical investigations and researches on the mechanisms of actions of PTT. © 2013 Elsevier GmbH.
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|Titolo:||Phytothermotherapy in fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis: Between tradition and modern medicine|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|
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