Physicool is currently being used within the NHS, private hospitals, private practices and by healthcare professionals to reduce pain, swelling and inflammation across a wide range of applications.
- Dr. Simon Garrett, Consultant Trauma & Orthopedic Surgeon, Dorchester County Hospital NHS Trust
Integrated cold and compression is clinically proven to help reduce swelling and regain range of movement. The reservoir fuelled cryotherapy cuff superseded ice based remedies. Now, due to the advantages offered, surgeons and therapists are adopting Physicool as their preferred cryotherapy device.
Hospitals are using Physicool with particular success post-surgery on patients who have undergone a knee replacement. Each bandage comes pre-treated in Coolant – rapidly evaporating alcohols. When placed on a limb the Coolant evaporates absorbing latent heat – drawing swelling and inflammation out of the area.
The bandage is manufactured using an open-cell weave which acts as the conduit for the Coolant and offers 2 to 3 hours of cooling before it will dry-out. The bandages can then be re-charged to give continual cooling. Physicool needs no prior refrigeration.
Due to the initial success achieved post-total knee arthroplastry (Garrett, 2012); Physicool is now being used to enhance patient rehabilitation post-operatively across all body parts, traumas, joint inflammation, haematoma’s and rheumatoid arthritis.
Without the associated risks of ice-based therapies, Physicool has proven to outperform existing cold therapies. In 2012 Mr A. Mumith MRCS, Mr M Barrett MRCS and Mr S. Garrett FRCS (Tr&Orth) conducted an Ethics approved, non-commercial study to compare the efficacy of Physicool with the Cryo Cuff cooling system in Total Knee Arthroplastry (TKA) patients. The method used a randomised study by patient hospital number of 80 patients (40 per group). All TKA were by a single surgeon using default surgical techniques.
The cooling devices were assigned on the 1st post-operative day. VAS pain scores and the range of movement were recorded pre-cooling and after 30 minutes of cooling. Results were obtained for the 1st and 2nd days post-operatively after which the patients were discharged.
The trial demonstrated that Physicool is a very viable alternative to Cryo/Cuff. For the Physicool group there was a statistically significant increase in the range of motion and reduction in pain compared to the Cryo/Cuff group.
On the first post-operative day, the Physicool group had a 20.38° improvement in Range of Motion which was 65% greater than that achieved by the Cryo/Cuff group and the Physicool group’s VAS pain score was reduced by 44% more than was achieved by the Cryo/Cuff Group.
On the second post-operative day, the Physicool group had an improvement in Range of Motion 83% greater than that achieved by the Cryo/Cuff group and the Physicool group’s VAS pain score was reduced by 116% compared to the reduction achieved by the Cryo/Cuff Group.
Although there is anecdotal evidence of the Physicool group continuing to outperform the Cryo/Cuff group after the patients were discharged, this improvement could not be quantified as part of this first study.
For the purposes of the study, the cooling for both groups was limited to two 30 minute sessions per day. In normal use, an important advantage of using Physicool is that it can be used for significantly longer periods than would be possible for Cryo/Cuff because Physicool does not restrict ambulatory movement, the bandage can be left on and will cool for up to two hours before all the coolant has evaporated and the coolant can then topped up or recharged using the spray.
There is an expectation that in normal clinical use, both before and after discharge, patients will be willing to use Physicool more often and for longer periods than they would consider using Cryo/Cuff, and their improvements in range of motion and pain relief are likely to be even greater than was achieved in this controlled study.