Fluidotherapy is a type of therapeutic treatment that involves the use of a dry heat and massaging effect of fluidized particles, usually made of cellulose, to provide relief from pain and stiffness.
The patient places the affected area in a machine that generates heated air and the cellulose particles are suspended in the air, creating a fluid-like environment.
The combination of heat, massage, and fluidized particles can help to improve blood circulation, reduce inflammation, and increase the range of motion.
- The device consists of a cabinet that contains finely ground cellulose particles made from corn cob.
- The device circulates heated air through the particles, causing them to move like a liquid.
- It allows for high levels of heating, higher than water and paraffin treatments.
- The device utilizes a stream of thermostatically controlled heated air that flows over and through the particles by an electric fan located inside a lid-covered steel cabinet.
Preparation of the Patient-
- The patient should prepare for treatment in the same way as they would for a hot pack application, by undressing the affected area and removing jewelry or any other items that may interfere with the treatment.
- The therapist should also check the patient’s skin sensation for heat and cold prior to treatment.
- If there is an open wound on the area to be treated, it must be covered with a plastic sheet to prevent further damage or contamination.
The patient extends the part to be treated through the portal of the unit and closes the sleeve to prevent particles from coming out. The required temperature is maintained and the patient is told to exercise the part inside the cabinet. The temperature of the unit is maintained between 38-45°C or a little higher. The treatment usually lasts for 15-20 minutes. The system has very low viscosity, which allows exercises to be performed inside the cabinet, like the exercises performed inside a warm heater (but the part does not get wet). After the treatment is over the part is removed from the cabinet and the skin is examined. A mild erythema is normal.
Advantage of Fluidotherapy
- Active movement is possible along with heat therapy.
- The treated part experiences very minimal pressure.
- It is easy to apply heat therapy.
- Provides dry and comfortable heat.
Disadvantage of Fluidotherapy
- The equipment costs a lot of money.
- Keeping the limb in a dependent position may worsen edema.
- The equipment can cause overheating and burning of the tissue.
- Some patients cannot tolerate the particles present inside the equipment.
- The particles may spill onto a smooth floor, making it slippery and increasing the risk of falls.
- Postoperative rehabilitation
- subacute condition
- chronic condition
- Anesthetic area
- Severe circulatory disorder
- Heat sensitive patient