Cryotherapy: Risky Business?

In its simplest form, cryotherapy can be described as cold therapy. It has become popular among professional athletes and celebrities to help ease pain and inflammation from injuries and stress on the muscles. But we aren’t just talking about applying an ice pack to a sore knee. Cryotherapy involves extreme cold therapy that can range from approximately -150 degrees Fahrenheit to -200 degrees Fahrenheit and, sometimes, even colder! And Whole Body Cryotherapy (WBC) is exactly as it sounds, where the entire body is exposed to excessively cold temperatures for 2 to 4 minutes. 

Cryotherapy has gained a lot of recognition lately with the biggest names on the sports fields and the movie screens, it is not without controversy and risk. Most recently, Antonio Brown, formerly of the Pittsburgh Steelers and now plays for the Oakland Raiders, suffered adverse effects, severe enough to have him out of play for weeks during the preseason. As Yahoo Sports shared, “Chris Simms of NBC Sports reported that Brown suffered frostbite on his feet after ‘entering a cryotherapy machine without the proper footwear.’ That seemed hard to believe, but NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport confirmed it through team sources.” If you haven’t already seen the photos, we’ll spare you the details, but suffice it to say they were not easy to view.

The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) cites numerous skin damage risks such as frostbite, frozen limbs, or serious rashes that can occur as the result of cryotherapy. Furthermore, Harvard Health Publishing has reported that the FDA warns consumers, “If you decide to try WBC, know that the FDA has not cleared or approved any of these devices for medical treatment of any specific medical conditions.”

So, while cryotherapy may be popular, it may not be wise. If you are looking for a non-surgical, non-invasive option for wound healing or athletic recovery, consider the Gladiator Therapeutics Far Infrared Device. 

We guarantee your satisfaction, but don’t take our word for it. Learn more here and see what our happy customers have to say. And let us know what you think after you try your own device; we would love to hear from you!

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NOTE: Content included here is not medical advice, and only is intended as information for adults. Always consult with your health care professional before making changes to diet, exercise, medication, or before use of any product or device.