paraffin wax

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					At the end of this lecture the student
must be able to
 Know the composition of paraffin
 wax therapy
 Determine the physiological effect of
 paraffin wax therapy
 Identify the indications and
 contraindications of paraffin wax
 Know advantages and disadvatages of
 paraffin wax
         Paraffin Wax
Is a form of conductive heat (moist).
It consists of a Mixture of melted
Paraffin and mineral oil in proportions
of four parts wax to one oil
    Benefit of paraffin oil
 Reduce   the melting temperature of
  paraffin from 54 ºC to between 45 ºC
  and 50 ºC.
 Keep the wax liquid at lower temp &
  prevent burns.
   Ratio of paraffin to oil can be safely applied
    directly to the skin at this temperature
    because of its low specific heat and thermal
  Paraffin Wax Unit
 Stainlesssteel or
  enameled baths
  which are electrically
 Temperature is kept
  constant by a
Physiological effects of Paraffin wax

Heat production
Increase skin temperature 8° to 13°C,
  subcutaneous fascia about 5°C and
  superficial muscle about 2°C to3°C
  after 30 minutes of wax wrapping.
  Circulatory effect
 Vasodilatation  of superficial
  capillaries and arterioles.
 Hyperemia of the skin.
Analgesic effect:

   Have a sedative effect on the tissues.
   Soothing effect to the patient.
   Reduction of muscle spasm
Stretching effect
   After wax the skin is left moist,
    soft and pliable.
   This is useful method for
    stretching scars and adhesions
    before applying mobilizing
  Indications of Paraffin wax
 Pain   and muscle spasm.
 Edema and inflammation e.g. post
  traumatic swelling of hands and feet,
  tenosynovitis. Rheumatic conditions,
  degenerative joint disease.
 Stiff joints.

 Adhesions and Scars :

 Old sprain, strain and contusion,
    Contraindication of Paraffin wax
   Impairment of skin sensation.
   Some dermatological conditions e.g. dermatitis.
   Circulatory dysfunction e.g. Varicose veins,
    deep vein thrombosis and arterial diseases.
   Analgesic drugs
   Cancer or tuberculosis: in the area to be treated
   Infection and open wounds.
   Gross edema; the skin is very thin and delicate
    and may be damaged.
   Lack of comprehension e.g. children - very old
   Deep X ray therapy
  Advantages of Paraffin Wax Therapy
 More  than one patient can be treated in
  one time.
 It can be combined with exercises
  especially after removal of plaster cum
  following fracture without supervision.
 It can be used at home.

 It can be molded around the bone
  contours of hands & feet.
   Effective more for distal extremities,
   Most effective method of application is the bath
    method, which limits accessibility for other
    body parts to be treated.
   No method of temp control once applied.
   Heating lasts only about 20 minutes.
   The bath must be cleaned regularly & emptied at
    least twice a year.
   Contamination of oil may occur by atmospheric
    True and False
 Paraffin   wax is a source of moist heat

   Paraffin wax has high thermal
    conductivity so comfortable to patient
Choose the best answer
In paraffin wax therapy a mixture of
   melted Paraffin and mineral oil is
   used with a ratio of
a) 1 part wax to 4 parts oil
b) 2 part wax to 4 part oil
c) 4 parts wax to 1 part oil
d) 4 parts wax to 2 parts oil

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