Cutaneous effects and therapeutic uses of heat with emphasis on infrared radiation

J Am Acad Dermatol. 1989 Feb;20(2 Pt 1):278-86. doi: 10.1016/s0190-9622(89)70034-7.


The adverse effects and therapeutic benefits of heat, specifically infrared radiation, on skin have received little attention. In this review we discuss the evidence indicating that heat and infrared radiation are not totally harmless, but that they may be involved in both photoaging and photocarcinogenesis. We also review the clinical syndrome thought to be caused by infrared radiation and the therapeutic uses of both local heat and infrared radiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cryotherapy
  • Hot Temperature / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Infrared Rays* / adverse effects
  • Skin / pathology
  • Skin / radiation effects*
  • Skin Diseases / etiology
  • Skin Diseases / therapy
  • Skin Neoplasms / etiology
  • Ultraviolet Rays / adverse effects