Testimonials of Therapy
Dead Sea Salt Research
In order to ascertain and confirm the beneficial therapeutic effects of Dead Sea Bath Salts, a series of clinical research projects have been carried out both in Israel and in other countries where the use of the salts has become an established practice.
Dr. I. Machtey (1) studied the influences of Dead Sea Bath Salts on rheumatic patients suffering from osteoarthritis or a localized type of tendonitis. 103 patients were treated for one or two weeks with daily Dead Sea Bath Salts in a sanatorium located about 400 m. above sea level. The patients were randomly assigned to one of three types of baths (three sub groups):
One week of proper treatment resulted in impressive improvement in all parameters in patients receiving 7.5% and 2% bath salt concentration, but little or no improvement was noted in those treated with 0.5% salt concentration. The greater the physical limitations, the more pronounced was the improvement.
Sixty-six patients received two weeks treatment. An additional slight improvement was noted in patients treated with 7.5% or 2%salt concentration, and those having only 0.5% salt baths improved relatively more as compared with the results after the first week of treatment. However most of the results in the 0.5% group were less impressive than those in the higher concentrations.
Over 80% of all the patients reported having less pain, 70% said their mobility improved, and about 60% were able to decrease their use of analgesics. Dr. Machtey concludes his study by stating that "There is little doubt that the Dead Sea treatment in those who benefit from it can be extended and repeated at home using a 2%bath solution, which is both economical and readily available".
A similar study was carried out by Dr. P Engel (2) from the sanatorium clinic of the city of Mayenbad, Bad Waldsee, in Germany. The study was performed with 60 patients whose rheumatic discomfort could not be substantially reduced by the customary balneotherapy of their clinic. The baths with Dead Sea Bath Salts were then prescribed in lieu of additional medicinal therapy. Each patient was treated for a duration of four weeks, with 3 baths per week. Salt concentration was 2.5% (2 Kg per 801. bath), duration of bath 20 minutes, temperature of water 37 C. Parameters examined included: Pain at rest, spontaneous pain, kinesalgia, pain on pressure and reduced mobility.
The summary of results showed the following:
Dr. J. Arndt, from Germany (3) made a study of the effect of Dead Sea Bath Salts on patients suffering from psoriasis. Fifty patients, aged between 14 and 77 years were treated with the salts in a controlled way. Treatment consisted of partial or total baths. For a total bath, 2 Kgs of the salts were dissolved in a bath at a temperature of 27 C. The partial baths were made with a concentration of about 10%. The baths lasted for 20 minutes and afterwards the skin was thoroughly rinsed with running water. The effect is enhanced when the patient remains in a warm packed condition for one hour after the bath.
The treatment lasted for 3-4 weeks, with 3-4 baths per week. The results show that most symptoms of the illness diminished within one week of treatment, notably itch, scaling joint complaints, and the falling asleep and sleeping through difficulties. Other parameters such as spread , redness and infiltration decreased somewhat more slowly. Improvement was steady-the four week treatment left the patients essentially free from complaints.
Dr. Arndt points out that of particular importance from the patients point of view is the rapid relief from such irritating system as itching. There is a corresponding relief from sleeping disturbances, which were rather wide-spread prior to treatment. The drastic decrease in scaling within one week can be interpreted by physician and patient alike as a further proof of the course outlined above: healing was total in 27 patients (54%), whereas in 22 cases there was a marked impressive improvement. Tolerance was excellent in all 50 cases. There were no side effects whatsoever, dermatological or otherwise.(1). "Dead Sea Balneotherapy in Osteoarthritis", Dr. Machtey (Hasharon Hospital, Petach-Tikya, Isreal). " Published in Proceedings of International Seminar on Treatment of Rheumatic Diseases", John Wright, PSG Inc. (1982).
(2). "On the Therapy of Rheumatic Illness with Medical Bathing Salts from the Dead Sea", Dr. P. Engel (Sanatorium Clinic of the City of Mayenbad, Bad Waldsee, FRG). Published in Acta Medica Empirica, 31, 374 (April 1982).
(3). "Salt from the Promised Land Helps Psoriasis Patients", Dr. J. Arndt, Published in Arztliche Praxis, vol. 34, No. 48, 1920,(15.6.1982).
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