5 December 2007

Cold Treatment revisited

A great many of you have commented, emailed etc to say that my videocast and articles on finger pulley injuries were helpful – thanks to all of you. It’s been really interesting that so many of you have tried the cold treatment I suggested with such positive effects.

I thought I’d let you know that I’ve heard feedback from someone who has used the cold treatment (same protocol – 30 mins immersed in the bucket, twice per day for several months) for an elbow injury and reported excellent results with much speeded rate of progress of healing and it allowed continued climbing during the rehab process. Good news.

Such anecdotal reports are all we have to go on at present until someone does a decent longitudinal study. All you sports science/medicine students who email me to ask for research project ideas – now there’s an excellent one worthy of a paper in BJSM if you have the guts to put in the work!

Any of you out there tried it on a shoulder injury?


nick said...

I tried it in October after a finger tweak giving pain in my wrist/forearm (middle finger tendon). Did your method over two weeks, with very light climbing and it worked a treat. I was expecting 6 weeks, but it healed in 3. Very pleased and will do it again next time.

TheUsualSuspect said...

Howdy Dave, I tried it on my shoulder after returning from Siurana a few weeks ago (nice going over there by the way, and thankfully you didn't use your original, alternative method looked sick :).
I wrapped it in some ice packs for about 30 mins, repeated after an hour, and then if I thought of it, I did it once more that evening.

don't know if it did a whole lot of work for this type of injury (I've used it for a finger tweak before and it was great). But maybe it was just the type of injury - it seemed pretty deep in the shoulder and just needed a good few weeks rest.

Duncan said...

Hi Dave, I've been trying out the treatment on an injury to my big toe. The toe is getting better but I'm not sure how much the cold treatment is helping because I've never had this type of injury before or met anyone who has.

Ernie said...

Hi Dave,
How cold should the water be, or how cold should it feel? I just seem to be getting cold fingers and less blood flowing...

David said...

Do you think submerging your whole arm is the way in treating a shoulder injury? Or just using a cold pack?

poey50 said...

Hi Dave,

I used the cold water treatment on my 'golfer's elbow' injury but with little effect. Since then I have had very good results following the advice of an Australian climber / physiotherapist using one very specific exercise twice daily to strengthen the tendon. This combined with daily icing and firm massage across the tendon has really helped. I notice the difference immediately. I came across a copy of his article online - the original was in 'Rock and Ice'. He cites a 100 percent success with all those he has personally treated. He seems to have fully understood the difference between tendonitis and tendosis and this made a great deal of sense.

Keep up the great work.

Best .. David

poey50 said...

Correction - final sentence should say "the difference between tendonitis and tendonosis"

Scottah said...

My hands don't have good blood flow at the best of times, ie I usually have cold hands as it is.

Dunking them in cold water for 30 mins didn't seem to work for me, they never felt 'flushed'.

I've just gone the typical warm water treatment, which should provide the same effect, just without the cold part! (or the wait for the 30 min cycle). Not sure if the lewis effect is better than the normal warm water effect (whatever it's called :)

Martin said...

Hi Dave, I just wanted to share one thing - I somehow misunderstood the instructions for cold treatment and I´ve been putting some ice in the water - it was quite effective too, the hand literally pulsed with blood flow after that. What do you think about it?

Meng Jinn said...

This is just my 2 cents.
Wouldn't it be more direct to immerse your hand in hot/warm water instead? After half a minute my hand was a deep pink/red and i could feel warmth radiating from the surface of my hands. I suppose it's the blood circulating through my hands?

Any scientific explanations as to whether this would be better or worse in the healing process, compared to the cold water treatment?

*i've an a3 pulley ring finger injury which is a year old, hurting only when i exert on hard routes. It never seemed to completely heal.