Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment – A link between drug treatments, new FAR infrared and targeting the IL-6 protein.

Last month a news article in The Daily Express, a UK newspaper, appeared referencing a new drug treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA).  The drug targets the IL-6 protein which is responsible for inflammation.

This stimulated my memory banks for a different study for knee pain which I vaguely remembered made reference to an IL protein … hang on, it’s the IL-6 protein!

Have I just discovered a link to a potential treatment for RA?

Here is the extract from the article and a link, but read on.

Sarilumab

http://www.express.co.uk/news/health/444653/New-breakthrough-jab-to-ease-arthritis-agony-and-slow-disease

Whilst preparing a summary of evidence for new FAR infrared (FIR) elements, I came across a study showing the effects of the FIR treatment on patients who had undergone knee surgery (total knee arthroplasty).  As well as significant pain reduction, reference is also made to IL-6 reduction:

FAR infrared and IL 6 protein

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22339105

“This study demonstrated that the FIR can lower the NRS of pain and thus reduce the discomfort experienced by the patient. Findings indicated that effective application of FIR decreased the serum level of Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Endothelin ET-1, which represent the subjective indicator of pain.”

FAR Infrared TherapyNow, anecdotally we hear countless testimonials from people with arthritis (not specifically RA) reporting significant pain relief from using TherMedic infrared ProWraps, as well as other conditions including low back pain, Frozen Shoulder and more.

Some of these effects may be down to the thermal effects of sustained vasodilation but other studies detail non-thermal effects which may explain other significant properties and benefits of TherMedic FIR for pain relief, see evidence summary.

For some people living with Rheumatoid Arthritis, medication does not always work and can include side-effects.

l220100-heat-pad_jpgThe above paper looking at the application of FIR for knee arthroplasty and reduction of IL-6 protein is not a large double-blind randomised controlled trial.

HOWEVER, in the context of this and other scientific evidence surrounding the re-emergence of FAR infrared, as well as the growing anecdotal evidence, there is surely a case for more detailed investigation into the potential applications of the new localised carbon-fabric infrared modality, TherMedic for the relief of pain caused by Rheumatoid Arthritis.

This question may well be being addressed in Asia where the new carbon fabric infrared element was developed, but to the scientific community in the UK, the new technology is still unknown.  That is changing.

NOTES:

Endothelins are proteins that constrict blood vessels and raise blood pressure. They are normally kept in balance by other mechanisms, but when they are over-expressed, they contribute to high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart disease

Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is an interleukin that acts as both a pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokine. Expression of IL-6 is enhanced at the site of inflammation, and blockade of IL-6 and IL-6 signalling is effective at prevention and treatment in models of inflammatory diseases (including arthritis and colitis).  Overall IL-6 is important – indeed, critical under certain conditions – to the development of persistent inflammation.

(C. Gabay Interleukin-6 and chronic inflammation  Arthritis Research & Therapy 2006, 8(Suppl 2):S3 http://arthritis-research.com/content/8/S2/S3

Author: Stephen Small
Director www.steadfastclinics.co.uk

I first came across infrared whilst using it with IDD Therapy spinal decompression.  Initially I saw it as a simple heat modality but it quickly became apparent that there was a lot more to TherMedic than meets the eye.  Steadfast Clinics distribute Thermedic in the UK.

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