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08.27.10 - Chronic Back Pain: A leading cause of work limitations

Center on an Aging Society - GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY

Back problems are among patients’ most frequent complaints to their doctors. Nearly 65 million Americans report a recent episode of back pain. Some 16 million adults - 8 percent of all adults - experience persistent or chronic back pain, and as a result are limited in certain everyday activities. Back pain is the sixth most costly condition in the United States. Health care costs and indirect costs due to back pain are over $12 billion per year. Adults with back pain are more likely to use health care services than adults without back pain. Many of the indirect costs of the condition are related to missed days of work and disability payments.

This Profile uses the term “adults with back pain” to describe adults who experience persistent or chronic back pain that limits their everyday activities.

Back pain is a leading cause of work-loss days. Some 83 million days of work are lost per year due to back pain. Back pain is a leading cause of work-loss days as well as work limitations. Between 1998 and 2000 the number of back pain injuries that have involved time away from work has increased. This increase follows an almost 32 percent decrease from 1994 to 1998. Among adults who are working, almost two-thirds - 64 percent - of those with back pain, compared to less than half - 45 percent - of those without back pain, have missed at least one day of work in the past year due to illness or injury. The proportion of workers who have missed many days of work is also much higher for those with back pain than for those without. Back pain may also affect other activities. Adults with back pain spend almost 200 million days in bed a year.

Back pain affects adults of all ages and incomes. In general, the characteristics of adults with back pain and the total adult population are not very different. Some differences between the two populations exist with respect to age and income, however. Some 41 percent of adults with back pain are 18 to 44 years old, compared to 54 percent of all adults. Slightly over one-quarter - 26 percent - of adults with back pain have an annual income of less than $20,000, compared to one-fifth of all adults.

One in four adults with back pain is in fair to poor physical health. Compared to adults without back pain, larger proportions of adults with any type of back pain report fair to poor mental and physical health. For example, the proportion of adults with back pain reporting fair to poor physical health - 25 percent - is more than double that of those without back pain - 11 percent.

Downhearted feelings are common among adults with back pain. Substantially larger proportions of adults with back pain, compared to those without back pain, report feeling sad, worthless, or hopeless. Almost three- quarters - 72 percent - of those with back pain report that such feelings have interfered with their life, compared to 61 percent of those without back pain. People with chronic back pain report significant levels of psychological distress, including feelings of anger and depression, while people who have suffered an acute episode of back pain are less likely to report these feelings.

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08.15.10 - Back Pain Prevalence in US Industry and Estimates of Lost Workdays

How-Ran Guo, MD, MPH, ScD, Shiro Tanaka, MD, MS, William E. Halperin, MD, MPH, DrPH, and Lorraine L. Cameron, PhD

Back pain is the most common reason for the filing of workers' compensation claims in the United States. It accounts for about one fourth of all claims and one third of total compensation costs. Back pain, which results in about 40% of absences from work, is second to only the common cold as the most frequent cause for sick leave. In 1990, estimates of the cost of back pain in the United States ranged from $50 billion to $ 100 billion.An analysis of data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) estimated that in a given 1-year period, there are about 22.4 million cases of back pain that last a week or more (prevalence: 17.6%), and these cases were estimated to result in a total of about 149 million lost workdays. That analysis, however, included all back pain.

Therefore, we conducted further analyses of work-related back pain and issues regarding workday loss. Because lost workdays is a well-defined outcome and a good surrogate for disease severity, the results of this study should aid in assessments of the seriousness of the problem. The previous analysis of NHIS data identified occupations that present high risk for back pain; in this study, however, we aimed at identifying high-risk industries to better define the target for research and intervention.

Methods

The NHIS is conducted annually by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).The purpose of the survey, which involves a probability sample of noninstitutionalized civilians living in the United States, is to estimate national health statistics. Each year, various supplements are added to allow examination of special topics. In 1988, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics cosponsored the Occupational Health Supplement, which included a "work history" section and sections on various diseases and conditions, including back pain. From each family in each participating household (some households had more than 1 family), a household member 18 years or older was randomly selected for the interview; proxy respondents were not accepted. Complete documentation on the NHIS, as well as the survey questionnaire, is available from the NCHS.

We defined a "worker" as a respondent who answered yes to the following question: "During the past 12 months, that is since [a specific date] a year ago, did you work at any time at a job or business, not counting work around the house?" Unpaid work in a family business or farm was included. From responses to this question, 30074 workers were identified, representing 127 million working people across the United States. A "case patient" was defined as a respondent who reported having back pain in any anatomical location every day for a week or more during the study period (i.e., the 12- month period before the interview), with the pain not entirely related to menstruation. Such reports led to identification of 5256 cases, projecting to about 12.5 million male and 9.9 million female case patients.

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07.15.10 - Far Infrared Technology Research (FIR) with Observations About the USA Consumer Market

From the Hong Kong Far Infrared Ray Association -

FIR Research Review

Definitions

• FIR’s are specific wave-lengths of light from the sun (over 1/2 the sun’s energy.

• FIR waves are the safest and the most beneficial of the sun’s waves.

• “Radiant heat” is neither ultraviolet radiation nor atomic radiation.

• “Radiant heat” is a form of energy that directly heats objects directly through a process called “conversion” without having to heat the air in between;

• “Radiant heat” is also known as infrared energy-IR;

• The infrared segment of the electromagnetic spectrum is divided into three segments by
wave length, measured in microns or micrometers (a micron = 1/1,000,000 meter); .076-1.5 microns = near or close; 1.5-5.6 = middle or intermediate; 5.6-1000 = far or long-wave infrared. The infrared segment of the electromagnetic spectrum occurs just below or “infra” to red light as the next lowest energy band of light. This band of light is not visible to human eyes but can be seen by special cameras that translate infrared into colors visible to our eyes. However, we feel this type of light, perceived as heat.

• The sun creates most of its energy within the infrared segment of the spectrum. Our
atmosphere has a “window” in it that allows FIR rays in the 7-14 micron range to safely reach the earth’s surface. When warmed, the earth radiates infrared rays in the 7-14 micron band and has a peak output at 10 microns.

• The infrared heat in a green house is just like the heat from our sun or that which our own bodies produce as they burn fuel to keep us warm. Supposedly, bodily tissues needing a boost in their output selectively absorb FIR rays. The internal production of infrared energy that normally occurs within our tissues is associated with a variety of healing processes. After boosting a tissue’s level to maximum, the remaining rays pass onward harmlessly. This phenomenon is called “resonant absorption.”

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03.19.09 - Medicinal EMFs - Harnessing electric and magnetic fields for healing and health

By Janet Raloff -

Jan Andreason used to get slightly rattled every day-all in the name of science.

Though in her mid-50s, Andreason has the thin, fragile bones seldom found in women under 70. Hoping to fight off further ravages of osteoporosis, she had volunteered in late 1997 as a subject in a year-long trial of atreatment for the brittle-bone disease.

Participation wasn't difficult. All Andreason had to do was submit to twice-daily bouts on a 75-pound contraption installed in her guest bedroom by the Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Neb. Resembling an upright bathroom scale with handlebars, the vibrating machine sent a gentle buzzing through every bone in her body.

Most mornings, Andreason read the newspaper or blow-dried her hair while putting in 10 minutes on the device. Before bedtime, she'd step on the platform for a second 10-minute buzz.

This shaky therapy may represent the future of bone health. Preliminary data from Andreason and 51 other postmenopausal recruits suggest that in some cases, the platform's vibrations may be able to halt the rapid bone loss that occurs in most older women, says Kenneth J. McLeod, a co-inventor of the device.

Even newer data from a 2-year study of sheep suggest that scientists might be able to tailor the regimen to increase the mass of the bones most vulnerable to age-related thinning.

The vibrating platform appears to work by triggering bones to generate tiny electric fields, explains McLeod of the State University of New York at Stony Brook, who directed the sheep experiments. These tiny currents may turn on genes that affect bone remodeling and growth.

The experimental osteoporosis-fighting machine represents just one technology in a wave of new applications of electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) to bone injuries and related problems. All build on decades of work by physicists and surgeons. Though much of this work remains experimental, the Food and Drug Administration acknowledges that when properly applied, EMFs can make for good medicine.

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Most news reports about EMFs have focused on emanations from power lines, building wiring, and appliances. They have chronicled the continuing controversy over whether these fields have unhealthy effects, such as perturbed sleep patterns (SN: 1/10/98, p. 29), altered heart rhythms (SN: 1/30/99, p.70), and cancer (SN: 2/21/98, p. 119). Yet while these risks have grabbed headlines, EMFs have been quietly edging into medicine.

Over the past 20 years, FDA has approved EMF generators for two medical uses. The devices are used frequently to treat bone fractures that have stopped healing. EMF treatment is also increasingly being applied to fuse spinal vertebrae in people with intractable back pain.

The first inkling of potential benefits from EMFs emerged during the 1950s, McLeod notes. That's when a series of experiments showed that bone is piezoelectric, meaning that bending or deforming its crystal structure creates local electric currents. Physiologists quickly linked these currents to bone growth in studies that seemed to explain why exercise strengthens bones and immobilization weakens them. This link suggested that electric currents could be applied as therapy.

From the beginning of EMFs' ascendancy to medical respectability, Carl Brighton has been an active player. An orthopedic surgeon at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, he was the first doctor to treat a fracture with EMFs.
In 1971, Brighton was faced with the case of a Camden, N.J., woman whose 9-month-old ankle fracture steadfastly refused to heal. From his experiments, Brighton knew that electric fields have the capacity to knit unfused bones in animals. So, his team poked a metal pin into the woman's leg, anchored the pin to the broken bone, and hooked it up to a battery. Then, they put the leg in a cast and sent the woman home with the batteryconnected.

"Twelve weeks later, her bone was healed," Brighton recalls. The researchers' explanation was that the small current delivered by the battery to the patient's ankle-which they measured at 10 microamps-spurred specialized cells to grow new bone.

Over the past quarter century, orthopedic researchers have been refining their techniques. Brighton developed one of the earliest of those modifications-delivery of fields via electrodes placed on the skin instead of on the bone. This method remains the only one that FDA has approved for fusing spinal vertebrae, he notes.

More recent techniques enable fields to be delivered without electrodes touching the body. This is the most important therapeutic advance in recent years, suggests Arthur A. Pilla. A biophysicist at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, he explains that the newer devices transfer a field's energy into the body from wire coiled around, but not touching, the injured area.

For EMFs to penetrate the body, the coils must carry a pulsing electric current, he explains-not the simpler direct currents associated with electrode-generated fields. In designing the waveform for these oscillating fields-their shape, amplitude, and frequency-"we were guided by measurements people were making of natural, mechanically induced voltages in bone," Pilla recalls. The waveforms of these therapeutic EMFs differ dramatically from those generated by power lines and indoor wiring.

His group won FDA approval in 1979 for the use of a pulsing EMF device for fusing broken bones. Pilla adds that the major manufacturers of EMF-generating bone-growth stimulators still rely on this basic waveform. Twenty years later, researchers still argue whether therapeutic benefits trace to the electric fields or the magnetic fields that these devices induce.

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To study joint disease, orthopedic surgeon Roy K. Aaron has been working with a pulsed EMF technique. He and Deborah Ciombor, both at Brown University School of Medicine in Providence, R.I. recently used it to treat a strain of guinea pigs that ordinarily begin showing signs of osteoarthritis of the knee by 1 year of age. The researchers began EMF therapy on one group of animals on their first birthday and continued it for 6 months. Another group received no treatment. At 18 months of age, most of the treated guinea pigs had relatively mild disease and a few appeared to be free of pain. All the untreated animals were crippled by the oseoarthritis.

"I was so surprised by the difference between the [treated and untreated groups] that I repeated the experiment," Aaron says. The results were the same. The data demonstrate that this treatment does not simply reduce symptoms, such as swelling, but actually modifies the development of disease, he says.

EMF therapy also helps people with established joint disease, Aaron says. This month, he's completing a clinical trial of EMF therapy for men and women with advanced osteoarthritis in their knees.

Two previous studies had found that EMFs reduce pain and swelling. EMFs also have that effect in his new trial-presumably, he says, "by changing the chemistry of the joint." Studies by his team and others indicate that these fields can increase a joint's production of natural anti-inflammatory agents, such as transforming growth factor-beta.

Not surprisingly, Aaron notes, medical supply companies are now developing products, such as a glove with coils, to deliver EMFs to arthritis-savaged joints.

Softer tissues also respond to these fields. For instance, Pilla observes that many people with bone breaks experience significant pain in muscles around their injuries. Shortly after EMF therapy begins, however, that pain disappears.

Though the mechanism remains elusive, Pilla says, the treatment seems to affect swelling, which can cause pain. If this proves true, he says, EMFs might benefit people with carpal tunnel syndrome, where swelling in the wrist pinches nerves going to the fingers.

Indeed, that's a possibility that Betty F. Sisken of the University of Kentucky College of Medicine in Lexington would like to explore. Currently, she's probing EMFs' direct influence on nerves.

In their initial studies, she and her colleagues crushed a nerve in the hind leg of rats and then treated the animals with EMFs for 4 hours daily. In one 6-day-long experiment, the treatment speeded the nerve's recovery by 22 percent. In follow-up tests-where 16 rats received EMFs for 40 days and an equal number were allowed to heal unaided-treated animals again showed an accelerated recovery.

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Despite some exploration of EMFs to heal nerves and other soft tissue, the majority of studies continue to focus on bone.

James T. Ryaby, vice president of OrthoLogic, a medical devices company in Tempe, Ariz., has been using what he calls combined fields-oscillating magnetic fields superimposed on a static magnetic field. They appear to spur bone growth more quickly than the older type of pulsed EMFs, Ryaby says.

What's more, the combined-field devices require just a small percentage of the power used by typical pulsed EMF generators. This means the combined-field devices can run on conventional batteries, Ryaby says. His company is testing such a device for fusing vertebrae in patients with back pain.

More tantalizing, says Ryaby, are the data from a just completed study with female rats suggesting that the combined fields can reverse the kind of bone loss women experience after menopause. After removing the rodents' ovaries to simulate a postmenopausal state, Ryaby's team watched the animals quickly lose bone. Six weeks later, some of the rats began receiving combined-field therapy for 30 minutes a day. Within a little more than a month, he says, the treated animals were regaining lost bone while their untreated counterparts continued to lose it.

As exciting as the data are, Ryaby says his company has no plans to develop the technology for human use. Women just aren't likely to sign up for such therapy at menopause knowing that they would likely have to continue it the rest of their lives.
Indeed, McLeod says, "a fear factor associated with EMFs clearly haunts the therapeutic field."

Because of the stigma of EMFs, McLeod and Clint Rubin have been looking for an alternative. The Stony Brook pair may have found it in the bones themselves. Over the past 20 years, they have demonstrated that during walking, jumping, or even just maintaining a balanced posture, muscles exert enough strain on bones to generate microcurrents of electricity. The discovery inspired the scientists to create a device to encourage the body to make its own electric fields for building bones.

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The resulting vibrating platform "is highly innovative but not ready for prime time," says endocrinologist Robert Marcus of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Palo Alto, Calif. Overall, the benefit for women taking part in the Creighton study, led by Diane Cullen, "was less than overwhelming," he says. He acknowledges, however, that certain subgroups-such as those, like Andreason, who started out with the thinnest bones-appeared to derive benefit. He's begun using the device in a pilot project.

The platform's commercial developer, Exogen of Piscataway, N.J., will fine-tune the device's frequency and the recommended treatment times before undertaking any study of a larger group in women, says Jack T. Ryaby, the company's scientific director.

McLeod says that in his newest tests with aging sheep, platforms vibrating at 90 Hz increased bone mass. This suggests that tripling the vibration frequency of the platform used for the Creighton trial might build new bone, not just stabilize loss.

Moreover, if the sheep data translate to people, he suspects that women would need just 8 minutes a day on the faster-vibrating device. "This is really exciting because 8 minutes is easy," he says.

For the larger range of problems, Pilla holds that applied EMFs will be more useful. However, medical generators today produce fields with a waveform that probably is far from optimal, he says. Though experiments aimed at improving these generators and securing FDA approval for devices with different waveforms would be costly, the payoff could be tremendous, he believes.

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To get to that payoff, scientists need to learn more about why these fields work. Many of the researchers who are developing new applications for these fields are therefore asking, What do cells of the body see in EMFs?

"These fields are too weak to power the biology or biochemistry that is active here," Pilla says. "They only deliver enough energy to trigger something"-much like a pacemaker triggers contractions in the heart.

In Bioelectrochemistry and Bioenergetics last February, he and his colleagues reported finding that pulsed EMFs appear to increase the binding of ions to receptors on the surface of cells. For instance, they've witnessed enhanced binding of calcium to the regulatory molecule called calmodulin. This difference may prove important in stimulation of bone-cell growth by EMFs, Pilla says.

EMFs can also increase bone cells' production of insulinlike growth factor II, according to test-tube experiments by Ryaby of OrthoLogic and his colleagues. This hormonelike molecule plays a key role in bone growth and may be regulated by calcium binding to calmodulin.

At the BioElectromagnetics Society meeting last June, Sisken's group reported on test-tube experiments showing that pulsed EMFs can turn on a gene in damaged nerves. That gene plays a role in triggering growth-related repair.

Brighton is also working to elucidate which genes are altered by EMFs. "This is to me what's most exciting," he says. "We can turn genes on and off with this stuff."

McLeod and his group tend to focus on physical effects of fields on cells. Their data indicate that EMFs may bias the movement of cell structures that are otherwise jostled by the random pushes and pulls of chemical and physical processes, McLeod says. He also finds that EMFs can alter the environment in which cells grow and move within the body. For instance, electric fields may alter the stickiness of surrounding proteins. Indeed, he argues that changes in a cell's behavior may trace as much to environmental alterations as to the cell's gene activity or membrane effects.

Changes in cellular behavior may not be limited to the fields being used in therapy today, however. Aaron, for instance, has examined effects of the 60-Hz fields generated by power lines and home wiring.

In the August Bioelectromagnetics, his group reports that field strengths similar to those in the home and workplace increased production of a protein that regulates proliferation and development of cells destined to become bone. The EMFs also stimulated some maturation in cells.

Aaron concludes that fields associated with electric power may exert a beneficial influence on such tissues rather than harm them.

All this basic research may add up to more effective devices and ubiquitous applications. For instance, Pilla says he believes generators might one day be miniaturized to the size of a dime and cost next to nothing.

He envisions disposable bandages incorporating a tiny EMF device that would treat problems ranging from ankle sprains to bedsores.

 

03.18.09 - Getting back in the game - Ounce of Prevention with Dr. Vendryes

By Dr. Tony Vendryes -

Our backbone (spine) is extremely important to our health.

The entire body is under the control of the nerves that originate in the spinal cord. Any disturbance in th of the spine can cause pressure, irritation or inflammation to these nerves and result in a wide range of disturbances and malfunction in various parts of the body. Backache is often a symptom of a spine that is out of alignment.
Backache is also a very common complaint and is second only to the common cold as the most frequent cause for absence from work. Millions of production man-hours are lost every year because of backache, not to mention the suffering and expense to individuals who fall victim. Almost half of all working adults complain of backache every year.

NEW THERAPY

After much suffering and expensive investigations, some are forced to resort to expensive spinal surgery. How about a simple, non-invasive therapy for spinal and overall health.
I have been using a technology called the Livelong Bed, based on the principles of chiropractics combined with those of traditional Chinese medicine. By lying on this Livelong device - a special bed - the individual receives a combination of the following therapies:

1. Spinal massage
2. Chiropraction
3. Acupressure/moxibustion
4. Far infrared light/heat/jade

According to ancient Chinese medicine, the spine must be properly positioned so that there is no pressure on the spinal cord. This allows the flow of 'chi' (the body's vital energy) to be undisturbed, and balance to be maintained.

If our spine is out o our health starts failing. In oriental science, doctors treat the whole body instead of trying to fix just one malfunction of symptom. Everything is part of a much bigger system, which if strong, can either prevent the illness, or heal an existing problem with very little help.

SPINAL MASSAGE

Spinal massage relaxes muscles and tendons around the spine, relieving pressure on the spinal cord, unblocking nerves, and adjusting the spine. The spinal massage also relaxes and prepares the back for the other components of the whole treatment.

CHIROPRACTICE

Have you ever been to a chiropractor? Chiropractic physicians are a special type of doctor with the letters DC (Doctor of Chiropractic) after their name. They are particularly trained to deal with problems related to misalignment of the backbone. Chiropractic treatment can be extremely effective in correcting back pain and other problems related to the spine, Unfortunantely, there are only a few chiropractors currently practicing in Jamaica. Along with the benefits of spinal massage, the device called Livelong helps to create correc using chiropractic principles.

ACUPRESSURE/MOXIBUSTION

Acupressure and moxibustion are variations of acupuncture in which specific points on the back are stimulated with pressure and heat, instead of needles. These techniques unblock what in oriental science are called meridians, or the 12 energy channels along which 'chi' (the body's energy) flows.

According to oriental medicine, the illness starts when the flow of chi is disturbed. To maintain, or restore the chi flow, different techniques are used such as acupuncture, acupressure, and moxibustion.

Acupuncture is one of the most popular techniques used in oriental medicine. Livelong it uses no needles, produces the same effect as acupuncture, acupressure and moxibustion combined.

FAR INFRARED LIGHT & HEAT

Going back to principles of oriental medicine, proper blood circulation and clean blood are essential to our well-being. The Livelong technology uses jade projectors and carbon panels which produce far infrared heat and light.

Both heat and light are essential in the healing and detoxifying processes. Heat and far infrared light help the body slowly clean the toxins from our system. They also stimulate the generation of new red-blood cells from the bone marrow, an important energy booster, especially for those whose immune systems are weak or who are anaemic.
Along with the heat, the far infrared light penetrates deep into the tissues and organs, reducing swelling and inflammation, helping the body heal in a safe and non-invasive way. Other forms of heat and light treatments do not penetrate as far below the surface of the body.

Jade is a semi-precious stone, which for ages has been used in oriental medicine to help stimulate 'chi'. Jade is incorporated in the Livelong device because of its ability to hold and transmit the heat and far infrared light into the body.

Livelong is not just a temporary measure to treat, control, or diminishsymptoms of a particular condition. It does and will help the body to improve our problems, but it is also about maintenance and prevention! Daily adjustments of the spine, detoxifying, maintaining blood and 'chi' circulation result in strong bodies able to fight and prevent diseases.

Our world is changing. These changes can make it even harder to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Through extensive scientific research and development, the Livelong technology has successfully integrated the traditional principles of Eastern and Western medicine. It is now available right here in Jamaica.

Email Dr. Tony Vendryes at vendryes@mac.com, log on to www.anounceofprevention.org, or listen to 'An Ounce of Prevention' on POWER 106FM on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m.

 

03.14.09 - Research on Far Infrared Rays

Dr. Aaron M. Flickstein -

The Use of Infrared Heat to Produce Cardiovascular Conditioning

"Regular use of a sauna may impact a similar stress on the cardiovascular system as running, and its regular use may be as effective [at] burning calories."

The August 7, 1981 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reported what is common knowledge today: Many people who run do so to place a demand on their cardiovascular system as well as to build muscle. What isn't well known is that it also reported the "regular use of a sauna may impart a similar stress on the cardiovascular system, and its regular use may be as effective as a means of cardiovascular conditioning and burning of calories as regular exercise."

It has been found that the infrared sauna makes it possible for people in wheelchairs, those who are otherwise unable to exert themselves, and those who won't follow an exercising/conditioning program to achieve a cardiovascular training effect. It also allows for more variety in any ongoing training program.

Blood flow during whole-body hyperthermia is reported to rise from a normal five to seven quarts a minute to as many as 13 quarts a minute.

http://www.physiotherm.net/saunas/43/infraredSaunaResearch.html

Due to the deep penetration of infrared rays (over one and a half inches into body tissue), there is a deep heating effect in the muscle tissue and internal organs. The body responds to this heat with a hypothalamic-induced increase in both heart volume and rate. Beneficial heart stress leads to a soughtafter cardiovascular training and conditioning effect. Medical research confirms the use of a sauna provides cardiovascular conditioning as the body works to cool itself and involves substantial increases in heart rate, cardiac output, and metabolic rate. As a confirmation of the validity of this form of cardiovascular conditioning, extensive research by NASA in the early 1980's led to the conclusion that infrared stimulation of cardiovascular function would be the ideal way to maintain cardiovascular
conditioning in American astronauts during long space flights.

Infrared Heat, Caloric Consumption, and Weight Control In its Wellness Letter, October 1990, the University of California Berkeley reported that "the 1980's were the decade of high-impact aerobics classes and high-mileage training. Yet there was something elitist about the way exercise was prescribed: only strenuous workouts would do, you had to raise your heart rate to between X and Y, and the only way to go was to "go for the burn." Such strictures insured that most 'real' exercisers were relatively young and
in good shape to begin with. Many Americans got caught up in the fitness boom, but probably just as many fell by the wayside. As we've reported, recent research shows that you don't have to run marathons to become fit - that burning just 1,000 calories a week...is enough. Anything goes, as long as it burns these calories."

Guyton's Textbook of Medical Physiology reports that producing one gram of sweat requires 0.586 kcal. The JAMA citation above goes on to state that "A moderately conditioned person can easily sweat off 500 grams in a sauna, consuming nearly 300 kcal - the equivalent of running two to three miles. A heatconditioned person can easily sweat off 600 to 800 kcal with no adverse effect. While the weight of water loss can be regained by rehydration, the calories consumed will not be." Since a sauna helps generate two to three times the sweat produced in a conventional hot-air sauna, the implications for increased caloric consumption are quite impressive.

Assuming one takes a sauna for 30 minutes, some interesting comparisons can be drawn. Two of the highest calorie output exercises are rowing and running marathons. Peak output on a rowing machine or during a marathon burns about 600 calories in 30 minutes. An infrared sauna may better this from "just slightly" up to 250 percent by burning 900 to 2400 calories in the same period of time. It might in a single session simulate the consumption of energy equal to that expended in a six- to nine-mile run. The infrared sauna can therefore, play a pivotal role in both weight control and cardiovascular conditioning. It is valuable for those who don't exercise and those who can't exercise and want an effective weight control and fitness maintenance program, and the benefits regular exercise contribute to such a program.

Musculoskeletal Improvements with Infrared Heat

Success has been reported from infrared treatments by Japanese researchers for the following musculoskeletal conditions:

Effects of Infrared Heat on Rheumatoid Arthritis

A case study reported in Sweden worked with a 70-year-old man who had rheumatoid arthritis secondary to acute rheumatic fever. He had reached his toxic limit of gold injections and his Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR) was still 125. After using an infrared heat system for less than five months, his ESR was down to 11. The rheumatologist worked with a 14-year-old Swedish girl who had difficulty walking downstairs due to knee pain from the age of eight. This therapist told her mother the girl would be in a wheelchair within two years if she didn't begin gold corticosteroid therapy. After three infrared sauna treatments, she began to become more agile and subsequently took up folk dancing without the aid of conventional approaches in her recovery. A clinical trial in Japan reported a successful solution for seven out of seven cases of rheumatoid arthritis treated with whole-body infrared therapy. These case studies and clinical trials indicate that further study is warranted for the use of whole-body infrared therapy in the care of patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

Other Therapeutic Effects of Infrared Heat

The following information has been summarized from Chapter 9 of Therapeutic Heat and Cold, Fourth Edition, Editors Justus F. Lehmann, M.D., Williams, and Wilkin, or concluded from data gathered there.

Generally it is accepted that heat produces the following desirable therapeutic effects:

1. Infrared heat increases the extensibility of collagen tissues.

Tissues heated to 45 degrees Celsius and then stretched exhibit a nonelastic residual elongation of about
0.5 to 0.9 percent that persists after the stretch is removed. This does not occur in these same tissues when stretched at normal tissue temperatures. Therefore 20stretching sessions can produce a 10 to 18 percentage increase in length of tissues heated and stretched.

Stretching of tissue in the presence of heat would be especially valuable in working with ligaments, joint capsules, tendons, fasciae, and synoviurn that have become scarred, thickened, or contracted. Such stretching at 45 degrees Celsius caused much less weakening in stretched tissues for a given elongation than a similar elongation produced at normal tissue temperatures.

Experiments cited clearly showed low-force stretching could produce significant residual elongation when heat is applied together with stretching or range-of-motion exercises. This is safer than stretching tissues at normal tissue temperatures.

2. Infrared heat decreases joint stiffness.

There was a 20 percent decrease in rheumatoid finger joint stiffness at 45 degrees Celsius (112 degrees Fahrenheit) as compared with 33 degrees Celsius (92 degrees Fahrenheit), which correlated perfectly to both subjective and objective observation of stiffness. Speculation has it that any stiffened joint and thickened connective tissues may respond in a similar fashion.

3. Infrared heat relieves muscle spasms.

Muscle spasms have long been observed to be reduced through the use of heat, be they secondary to underlying skeletal, joint, or neuropathological conditions. This result is possibly produced by the combined effect of heat on both primary and secondary afferent nerves from spindle cells and from its effects on Golgi tendon organs. The results produced demonstrated their peak effect within the therapeutic temperature range obtainable with radiant heat.

4. Infrared heat treatment leads to pain relief.

Pain may be relieved via the reduction of attendant or secondary spasms. Pain is also at times related to ischemia (lack of blood supply) due to tension or spasm that can be improved by the hyperemia that heatinduced vasodilatation produces, thus breaking the feedback loop in which the ischemia leads to further spasm and then more pain.

Heat has been shown to reduce pain sensation by direct action on both free-nerve endings in tissues and on peripheral nerves. In one dental study, repeated heat applications led finally to abolishment of the whole nerve response responsible for pain arising from dental pulp.

Heat may lead to both increased endorphin production and a shutting down of the so called "spinal gate" of Melzack and Wall, each of which can reduce pain. Localized infrared therapy using lamps tuned to the 2 to 25 micron waveband is used for the treatment and relief of pain by over 40 reputable Chinese medical institutes.

5. Infrared heat increases blood flow.

Heating one area of the body produces reflex-modulated vasodilators in distant-body areas, even in the absence of a change in core body temperature. Heat one extremity and the contra lateral extremity also dilates; heat a forearm and both lower extremities dilate; heat the front of the trunk and the hand dilates. Heating muscles produces an increased blood flow level similar to that seen during exercise.

Temperature elevation also produces an increased blood flow and dilation directly in capillaries, arterioles, and venules, probably through direct action on their smooth muscles. The release of bradykinin, released as a consequence of sweat-gland activity, also produces increased blood flow and vasodilatation.

Whole-body hyperthermia, with a consequent core temperature elevation, further induces vasodilatation via a hypothalamic-induced decrease in sympathetic tone on the arteriovenous anastomoses. Vasodilatation is also produced by axonal reflexes that change vasomotor balance.


6. Infrared heat assists in resolution of inflammatory infiltrates, oedema, and exudates
.
Increased peripheral circulation provides the transport needed to help evacuate oedema, which can help inflammation, decrease pain, and help speed healing.

7. Infrared heat introduced in cancer therapy.

More recently, infrared heat has been used in cancer therapy. This is a new experimental procedure that shows great promise in some cases when used properly. American researchers favour careful monitoring of the tumour temperature; whereas, the successes reported in Japan make no mention of such precaution.

8. Infrared heat affects soft tissue injury.

Infrared healing is now becoming a leading edge care for soft tissue injuries to promote both relief in chronic or intractable "permanent" cases, and accelerated healing in newer injuries.

Chinese Studies Report Positive Effects of Infrared Heat

Researchers report over 90 percent success in a summary of Chinese studies that assessed the effects of infrared heat therapy on:

• Soft tissue injury
• Lumbar strain
• Periarthritis of the shoulder
• Sciatica
• Pain during menstruation
• Neurodermatitis
• Eczema with infection
• Post-surgical infections
• Facial paralysis (Bell's Palsy)
• Diarrhoea
• Cholecystitis
• Neurasthenia
• Pelvic infection
• Paediatric pneumonia
• Tinea
• Frostbite with inflammation

Japanese Studies on the Positive Effects of Infrared Heat

• As reported in Infrared Therapy by Dr. Yamajaki, Japanese researchers have produced the following provocative results with whole-body infrared heat:

• Burns (relieves pain and decreases healing time with less scarring) High blood pressure (safe in 40 to 50 degrees Celsius, 104 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit, regular use helps lower pressure)

• Low blood pressure (sauna trains the body to raise the pressure)

• Brain damage (accelerated repair in brain contusions) Short-term memory loss (improved)

• Cancer of the tongue (improved)

• Toxic electromagnetic fields (effects neutralized)

• Cerebral haemorrhage (speeds and significantly enhances recovery)

• Arthritis, acute and chronic (greatly relieved)

• Gouty arthritis (relieved)

• Rheumatoid Arthritis (relieved)

• Menopausal symptoms (relieved chills, nervousness, depression, dizziness, head- and stomachaches)

• Weight loss (produced through sweating, the energy expended to produce sweating, and through direct excretion of fat)

• Auto accident-related soft tissue injury (daily sessions used until best healing attained, then used to deal with permanent residuals; pain control for chronic residuals lasted three days before another treatment was necessary)


Speculation about Infrared Heat Effects on Blood Circulation

All of the following ailments may be associated to some degree with poor circulation and, thus, may respond well to increased peripheral dilation associated with infrared treatment:

• Arthritis
• Sciatica
• Backache
• Haemorrhoids
• Nervous tension
• Diabetes
• Children's overtired muscles
• Varicose veins
• Neuritis
• Bursitis
• Rheumatism
• Strained muscles
• Fatigue
• Stretch marks
• Menstrual cramps
• Upset stomach
• Leg and decubitus ulcers (that fail to heal using conventional approaches)
• Post-operative oedema (treatment has proven so effective hospital stays were reduced by 25 percent)
• Peripheral occlusive disease ("The goal is to maintain an optimal blood flow rate to the affected part...In general the temperature should be maintained at the highest level, which does not increase the circulatory discrepancy as shown by cyanosis and pain." Therapeutic Heat and Cold, pp.456-457.)

Infrared Heat and Coronary Artery Disease, Arteriosclerosis,
and Hypertension

Finnish researchers, reporting the regular use of conventional saunas state "there is abundant evidence to suggest that blood vessels of regular sauna-goers remain elastic and pliable longer due to the regular dilation and contraction" of blood vessels induced by sauna use, such as the Physiotherm Far Infrared Sauna.

In 1989, German medical researchers reported in "Dermatol Monatsschrift" a single whole-body session of infrared-induced hyperthermia lasting over one hour had only beneficial effects on subjects with State I and II essential hypertension. Each subject experienced a rise in core body temperature to a maximum level of 35.5 degrees Celsius (100.5 Fahrenheit). All of the subjects in one experiment had significant decreases in arterial, venous, and mean blood pressure that lasted for at least 24 hours and linked, according to researchers, to a persistent peripheral dilation effect. An improvement in plasma viscosity
was also noted.

Another group of similar hypertensive patients was also studied under the same conditions of hyperthermia, with an eye toward more carefully evaluating the circulatory system effects induced by this type of whole-body heating. During each infrared session, there was a significant decrease of blood pressure, cardiac ejection resistance, and total peripheral resistance in every subject. There was also a significant increase of the subjects' heart rates, stroke volumes, cardiac outputs, and ejection fractions.

The researchers site these last three effects as evidence that the stimulation of the heart during infraredinduced hyperthermia is well compensated, while the prior list of effects show clear detail of the microcirculatory changes leading to the desired result of a lowering blood pressure.

Aging and Infrared Heat Therapy

Problems often accompanying aging have been reported in Japan to be alleviated or reduced by the use of infrared therapy:

• Menopause
• Cold hands and feet (a physical therapist found 20 to 50 percent improvement was maintained).
• High blood pressure (in the case of a diabetic a systolic decrease from 180 to 125 and a
concurrent 10 pound weigh loss) Rheumatoid arthritis (seven out of seven cases resolved in one clinical trial)
• Radiation sickness (relieved signs and symptoms)
• Cancer pain (greatly relived pain in later stages)
• Sequelae of strokes (Herniparesis relieved over time)
• Benign prostatic hypertrophy (reduced)
• Duodenal ulcers (eliminated)
• Pain preventing sleep or limiting sleeping position (relieved)
• Compression fracture pain (pain gone for three days after each treatment in osteoporotic
compression fractures) Haemorrhoids (reduced)
• Cystitis (gone)
• Cirrhosis of the liver (reversed)
• Gastritis (relieved)
• Hepatitis (gone)
• Asthma, bronchitis (cleared up)
• Chron's Disease (gone)
• Post-surgical adhesions (reduced)
• Leg ulcers (healed when previously static and resistant to other care)
• Keloids (significantly softened and, in some cases, completely gone)

Ear, Nose, and Throat Conditions Relieved with Infrared Heat

In Japan, ear, nose, and throat conditions were relieved with infrared heat treatments:

• Chronic middle-ear inflammation or infection (in one study of chronic serous otitis media no pathogenic bacteria were isolated in 70 percent of the subjects studied after the use of heat)
• Sore throats
• Tinnitus (chronic severe case cleared with 10 infrared treatments)
• Nose bleeding (reduced)
• Infrared Heat Improved Skin Conditions
• Infrared therapy is used routinely in burn units throughout Asia.
• Skin conditions improved in Japan and China with the use of infrared heat application
• Nettle rash
• Clogged pores (unplugged of cosmetics, unexcelled skin texture and tone)
• Poor skin tone (restored to a more youthful level)
• Scars and pain from burns or wounds (decreased in severity and extent)
http://www.physiotherm.net/saunas/43/infraredSaunaResearch.html
• Lacerations (healed quicker with less pain and scarring) Acne (three to four treatments may open pores that have been non-functioning for years, forcing out clogging cosmetics, and loosening dry outer skin)
• Teenage skin problems (clearing acne and blackheads) Body odor (improved functioning of the skin especially body odour induced by occupational exposure to odorous chemicals) Eczema and Psoriasis (respond well)
• Sunburn (According to the Clayton's Electrotherapy, 9th Edition, "infrared radiations are the only antidote to excessive ultraviolet radiations.")
• Ketoids (form at a reduced rate in those prone to their formation and may be softened by infrared heat if they have formed) Dandruff (increased blood flow through the scalp)

Mikkel Aaland's book Sweat (Capra Press, 1978) quotes a Finnish doctor:
"The best dressed foreigner can come into a doctor's office, and when his skin is examined, it is found to be rough as bark. On the other hand, as a result of the sauna, the skin of any Finnish worker is supple and healthy."

Contraindications

As you can see, the segment of the infrared spectrum emitted by an infrared sauna, such as Physiotherm Far Infrared Sauna is reputed to offer an astounding range of possible therapeutic benefits and effects in research conducted around the world.

However, the data presented in this article is offered for reference purposes only and to stimulate further observation. No implication of Physiotherm Far Infrared Sauna creating a cure for or treating any disease is implied nor should it be inferred. If you have a disease, be sure to consult with a primary-care physician concerning it.

Prescription Drugs: If you are using prescription drugs, check with your physician or pharmacist for possible changes in the drug's effect due to an interaction with infrared energy.

Certain Ailments: According to some authorities, it is considered inadvisable to raise the core temperature of someone with adrenal suppression, systemic lupus erythematosus, or multiple sclerosis.

Joint Problems: If a person has a recent (acute) joint injury, it should not be heated for the first 48 hours or until the hot and swollen symptoms subside. Joints that are chronically hot and swollen may respond poorly to vigorous heating of any kind. Vigorous heating is strictly contraindicated in cases of enclosed infections be they dental, in joints, or in any other tissues.

Pregnancy: In pregnancy or the suspicion of pregnancy, discontinuation of sauna use is recommended. Finnish women use traditional saunas that don't heat the body as deeply as an infrared sauna for only six to twelve minutes and reportedly leave at that time due to perceived discomfort. Their usage of traditional saunas at this low level of intensity is not linked to birth defects. Infrared sauna use may be two to three times more intense due to deep tissue penetration, and comparatively shorter two to six minute sessions hardly seem worth any minimal risk they may present.

Surgical Implants: Metal pins, rods, artificial joints, or any other surgical implants generally reflect infrared rays and are not heated by an infrared heat system. Nevertheless, a person should consult his or her surgeon before receiving such therapy. Certainly infrared therapy must be discontinued if a person experiences pain near any implants.

Silicone: Silicone does absorb infrared energy. Implanted silicone or silicone prostheses for nose or ear replacement may be warmed by infrared rays. Since silicone melts at over 200 degrees Celsius, it should not be adversely affected by an infrared heat system, however. It is still advised that a person checks with his or her surgeon, and possibly are presentative of the product manufacturer, to be certain.

Menstruation: Heating of the low-back area of women during the menstrual period may temporarily increase menstrual flow. Once a woman is aware that this is occurring, she can choose to allow herself to experience this short-term effect without worry. Or she may simply avoid using an infrared heat source at that time in her cycle.

Haemorrhage: Haemophiliacs and anyone predisposed to haemorrhage should avoid infrared usage or any type of heating that would induce vasodilatation that can lead to the tendency to bleed.

Worsened Condition: Should any condition worsen with the use of an infrared heat system, the use of the system should be discontinued.

Pain: Pain should not be experienced when using an infrared heat system. If one does, the use of radiant heat is clearly inappropriate for the person at that time.

Do not attempt to self-treat any disease with a Physiotherm Far Infrared Sauna without direct supervision
of a physician.

 

10.20.08 - Far Infrared Heat Therapy - The Latest Innovation in Pain Relief, Blood Circulation and Healing

By Richard Chandler -

The proven health and therapeutic benefits of Far Infrared Heat Therapy, while familiar to health professionals, are still a mystery to most consumers. A recent "explosion" of Far Infrared Heat Therapy products on the market has prompted most people to show interest in the benefits of using those products, but like most new technological applications, most are still skeptical as to whether or not these products actually work. The first question most consumers ask is, "What is Infrared Heat?"

What is Infrared Heat?

Infrared is a band of light that we perceive as heat. While we cannot see infrared heat, we can feel its effects. Infrared radiation, or radiant heat, represents over half of the energy emitted by the Sun and is divided into three segments: near, middle, and far.

Infrared rays heat our body by a process called conversion. Through conversion, far infrared heat can penetrate organic substances such as the human body without heating the air in between. You may notice a similar effect on partly cloudy days: when a cloud obscures the sun, you suddenly feel cooler, but the air temperature around you has not had time to be affected. The cloud blocked the sun's infrared rays from penetrating your body.

By using far infrared heat as opposed to traditional heating methods, you enable the heat to penetrate deeper into your body without the skin discomfort of heating pads, hot towels, and some pain relief gels/creams. However, less discomfort is just one of many benefits of far infrared heat therapy.

What are the benefits of Far Infrared Heat Therapy?

The human body is composed of 90% water. Far infrared rays cause resonance in water molecules, activating them and ionizing them. Because of this effect, Far Infrared Heat Therapy offers a variety of proven health and beauty benefits.

Far Infrared Heat Therapy effectively helps to increase blood circulation without putting strain on your heart and increases the levels of oxygen and white blood cells in your blood. It also stimulates the production of collagen (a building block for human tissue) in your body and helps to rid your body of toxins by causing you to perspire. You get the benefit of a stronger immune system, better cardiovascular health, and a faster ability to heal from soft tissue injuries such as tears, pulls, and sprains. Believe it or not, Far Infrared Heat Therapy also serves as an effective way to help cure hangovers.

The penetrating heat of Far Infrared Heat Therapy can be used as a beauty treatment as well. It reduces the appearance of crow's feet, fine lines, and wrinkles. In addition to helping heal scars, wounds, and cuts, it also smoothes your skin's texture, lessens coarseness, and reduces pore size.

Far Infrared Heat Therapy penetrates deep into soft tissue, making it an ideal source of arthritis pain relief. Athletes and the elderly will benefit from an effective means of loosening sore muscles and stiff joints without the use of ointments or creams that can burn and have an unpleasant odor. Those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, ALS, Lou Gehrig's Disease, and Parkinson's Disease can enjoy an easy to use form of pain relief. In addition to making you perspire and removing toxins from your body, Far Infrared Heat Therapy serves as a means of weight loss and cellulite reduction for those who cannot exercise due to health concerns or mobility issues.

How is Far Infrared Heat Therapy administered?

Thanks to the demand for pain relief applications as well as the growing knowledge and popularity of Infrared Heat Therapy, a wide variety of products are available to help you enjoy the benefits of this technology. Ranging in price from as low as $80 to as high as $2,600, Far Infrared Heat Therapy technology is used in handheld devices, stationary systems, products with built in massagers, and even highly effective home saunas.

The Light Relief® is an example of a handheld infrared therapy device. It uses either an AC adapter or batteries and can be held against your body with your hand or attached to your body using the long strap included with the product. It is a great solution for targeting pain in specific areas such as your joints, hands, and neck.

The DPL - Deep Penetrating Light Therapy System is a device that consists of two large panels, mounted on a stand, that contain dozens of infrared LED lights. The DPL can sit on a table to apply the skin-related benefits of infrared therapy to your face, or the two panels can be removed and either held or strapped to the body. When removed from the stand, the two infrared panels are ideal for relieving pain, healing, and increasing circulation in larger parts of the body such as the lower back, the upper back, thighs, shoulders, and abs.

Perhaps the most effective form of Far Infrared Heat Therapy, the Far Infrared Home Sauna offers many more benefits than any other device. Unlike traditional saunas that heat up to over 200 degrees Fahrenheit, the Far Infrared Home Sauna only reaches a maximum of 150 degrees. The infrared technology allows the heat to penetrate even deeper into your body while eliminating the discomfort of extremely high temperatures. The air is fresh and steam-free as opposed to being humid and stale, and this sauna uses a fraction of the energy a traditional one uses. Because the temperatures are low enough to not affect electronics, the Far Infrared Home Sauna includes a sound system with CD player and a reading light.

Will Far Infrared Heat Therapy Work For Me?

Far Infrared Heat Therapy has been shown to work on people of all backgrounds. The range of benefits from this effective form of heat therapy can be felt regardless of skin type, physical disabilities or limitations, and athletic condition. Simply use the available types of Far Infrared Heat Therapy for 15 - 30 minutes per day and enjoy the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.

Richard Chandler researches innovative new healthcare devices, medical supplies, and mobility aids for ActiveForever and specializes in writing informative articles and web content. For more information on Far Infrared Heat Therapy Devices, pain relief solutions, physical therapy products, or other durable medical equipment, please visit http://www.ActiveForever.com/ or visit the Medical Supplies Blog at http://www.medicalsuppliesblog.com.

 

10.13.08 - "Fascinating" Possible Cancer Treatment

From: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/08/27/earlyshow/health/main3206892.shtml

ERIE, Pa., Aug. 27, 2007(CBS) Editor's note: Test results revealed in November 2007 in an issue of the medical journal "Cancer" show that the harmless radio waves described below were used to kill liver tumors in rabbits with a 100 percent success rate and without side effects. To see a summary of the latest results, click here.

For most, a cancer diagnosis can be devastating.

But, as CBS News contributor Benno Schmidt reported on The Early Show Monday, for John Kanzius, it was a call to action.

Kanzius isn't a doctor. He doesn't even have a college degree.

Yet, observes Schmidt, the device he invented has impressed a notable researcher and inspired his hometown, Erie, Pa., to the point where it gave him a key to the city in April.

Asked by Schmidt what made him think he could cure cancer, Kanzius replied with a laugh, "What made me think I couldn't cure cancer? Nobody else was doing it!"

A former radio and TV engineer and one-time station owner, Kanzius, who suffers from leukemia, hated his chemotherapy and saw its devastating effect on others.

"I ran into some of the same patients over and over again and, to see their smiles disappear within a few weeks, and then watch their hair disappear and then, clinging to their mothers asking, 'What's wrong with me?' was heartbreaking."

Kanzius, who'd been building radios since childhood, believed radio waves could somehow be harnessed to destroy cancer, without drugs or invasive surgery.

"I envision this treatment taking no more than a couple of minutes or so," he says.

Kanzius hopes cancer treatments could work something like this: A patient would be injected with tiny metal nano-particles, which would be carried through the bloodstream by a targeting molecule and attach only to cancerous cells. The patient would then be exposed to an energy field created by radio waves, and feel nothing, while the nano-particles would generate enough heat to destroy their cancerous host cell.

While noting that targeting cancer cells will be the biggest challenge, Kanzius demonstrated just how easily the nano-particles could be used as receivers.

A lab worker injected carbon nano-particles into a specific spot in a piece of liver, which was then placed into an energy field of low frequency radio waves.

Within seconds, the areas injected the with nano-particles were heated to the point of actually cooking the liver, while leaving the surrounding meat unscathed.

Kanzius' invention has caught the attention of Dr. Steven Curley, a surgical oncologist and cancer researcher at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

"This has the most fascinating potential I've seen in anything in my twenty years of cancer research," Curley told Schmidt.

Curley has developed current methods of using radio frequencies to attack cancer, but says he looks forward to one day using a non-invasive approach like the one Kanzius is working on.

"This," Curley says, "is what will get into the cancer cells and again … release heat that will kill the cancer cells."

He wouldn't reveal animal test results on camera, but says he's optimistic that his findings will be announced this fall.

In the meantime, he's joined Kanzius in an effort to raise awareness and funds to expedite further research.

The April symposium at which Kanzius got the key to Erie brought out 700 people who were not only enthused by the prospect of curing cancer, but having their city as the manufacturing hub of the device Kanzius invented.

Former Erie Mayor Joyce Savocchio remarks, "I always say to John Kanzius, he'd better practice Swedish, because I honestly believe he's going to be in Sweden accepting the Nobel Prize!"

Savocchio leads the fundraising efforts in Erie and says, since the machine would be built there, Erie cud benefit, big-time.

"The projected income," she points out, "should this be successful, is anywhere between $2.5 billion and $10 billion a year."

Experts say human trials using Kanzius' device are at least three years away, but Kanzius is undaunted, telling Schmidt, "I'd like to see the first patient treated wile I'm still alive, and to have the doctor tell them they're cured!

As for Kanzius himself - Schmidt says his health is considered stable, and he continues to undergo chemotherapy for his leukemia.