Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2003 , Vol 49 , Num 5
Comparison of Cryotherapy with Superficial Thermotherapy in Patients with Cervical Spondylosis
İlhan Karacan 1 ,Halil Koyuncu 2 ,Şafak şahir Karamehmetoğlu 3 ,Ömer Kocaman 4
1 Serbest Fiziyatrist
2 İstanbul Üniversitesi Cerrahpaşa Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, İstanbul
3 İstanbul Üniversitesi Cerrahpaşa Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, İstanbul, Türkiye
4 Abant İzzet Baysal Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, Düzce

The objective of this study was to compare the clinical effects of cryotherapy and superficial thermotherapy in patients with cervical spondylosis. Fortyfive patients with cervical spondylosis (15 male, 30 female) were included in this study. The mean age was 46.6 ± 12.6 years. The patients were randomised to two groups. In the first group (n=21), cold pack was applied to cervical region for 20 minutes. In the second group (n=24), hotpack was applied to cervical region for 20 minutes. Both treatment methods were performed twice a day, five days in a week, for 2 weeks at home. All cases were given paracetamol (3X500 mg.). They were blindly evaluated before treatment, at the end of the first (1W) and second week (2W). The distributions of the groups were similar according to age, gender and radiological grade. Pain at rest evaluated by visual analogue scale (VAS) was decreased by 25.3 % at the 1W (p<0.001) and 39.2 % at the 2W (p<0.001) in the first group; 43.5 % (p<0.001) and 60.8 % (p<0.001) in the second group respectively.  Pain on joint motion evaluated by VAS was decreased by 25.8 % at the 1W (p<0.001) and 38.4 % at the 2W (p<0.001) in the first group; 43.8 % (p<0.001) and 61.4 % (p<0.001) in the second group respectively.   The number of patients with the   paravertebral spasm was decreased by 27.7 % at the 1W (p>0.05) and 50 % at the 2W (p=0.01) in the first group; 52.1 % (p=0.0004) and 73.9 % (p=0.0001) in the second group respectively.  The number of patients with some restriction in range of motion was decreased by 10 % at the 1W (p>0.05) and 20 % at the 2W (p>0.05) in the first group; 47.8 % (p=0.0011) and 65.2 % (p=0.0001) in the second group respectively. As a result, it can be suggested that superficial thermotherapy was more efficient than cryotherapy in patients with cervical spondylosis

Keywords : Cryotherapy, superficial heat, cervical spondylosis