Hope this helps, Monty:
Similar experiments using rat tail tendons have been conducted by Warren et al (1976) regarding permanent elongation of connective tissue at various temperatures.16 The data showed that the application of low force over a long duration was very effective in producing slow elongation in the viscous elements, resulting in increased residual elongation. Furthermore, elevating tissue temperature and maintaining it prior to applying force was found to cause significantly less tissue damage. Lastly, the lower loads applied at elevated temperatures for prolonged periods were found to produce significantly greater residual elongation.16
There are definite advantages to applying superficial heat to remodel connective tissue.
Lastly, there is an increase in the extensibility of collagen tissue, a major component of connective tissue, through changes in its viscoelastic properties following the application of heat. This is an important effect of heat due to the long-term remodelling of connective tissue.7,9”
“Connective tissue response
Heat therapy is used to treat joint stiffness and contracture. Temperature elevation combined with stretching the contracted tissue alters the viscoelastic properties of connective tissues.8,26-28 Pre-treatment with heat followed by application of stretch to the contracted connective tissue causes residual elongation of the tissue taking advantage of its viscous properties. This residual lengthening of connective tissue is called plastic deformation.29
Raising the tissue temperature to therapeutic levels between 40˚c and 45˚c (104˚F to 113˚F) results in greater residual connective tissue elongation with less tissue damage.30,31 Similarly, application of stretch with lower loads for longer duration produces greater increases in joint range of motion with less tissue damage.7,29,31,32 “
Last edited by marinera : 06-15-2008 at .