Leg coverage with towels during regional deep hyperthermia treatment and its effect on pelvic temperature and temperature distribution.

International journal of hyperthermia : the official journal of European Society for Hyperthermic Oncology, North American Hyperthermia Group

PubMedID: 15764352

Wielheesen DH, de Bruijne M, Graveland WJ, van Rhoon GC, van der Zee J. Leg coverage with towels during regional deep hyperthermia treatment and its effect on pelvic temperature and temperature distribution. Int J Hyperthermia. 2005;21(1):77-87.
INTRODUCTION
The feasibility and its effects on pelvic temperature distribution of covering the legs with towels during the second half of the deep hyperthermia treatment (DHT) is evaluated.

PATIENTS AND METHODS
Patients treated with DHT and radiotherapy were randomized to an alternating treatment schedule: 2nd and 4th treatment or 3rd and 5th treatment with the legs covered with towels in the second half of the treatment. Intra-luminal temperatures (vesical, vaginal and rectal) classified as tumour indicative (TI) or tumour contact (TC), oral temperature, applied maximum power and power at the end of the treatment were measured and compared between the two treatment schedules.

RESULTS
Fourteen female patients receiving a total of 51 treatments, 24 with and 27 without towels, were included for analysis. The mean intra-luminal, TI and TC temperatures, standard deviation and range for each site were calculated. The applied power was documented. There were no significant differences in any of the measured temperatures. There were no significant differences in the applied power. In only three treatments, the towels were removed preliminarily.

CONCLUSION
In the authors' experience, covering the legs with towels during the second half of DHT does not result in significantly higher or more homogeneous pelvic temperatures. There is no indication that the TC and TI temperatures are higher compared to all pelvic temperatures when towels are applied. Regarding the used power, there is no significant decrease with towels placed on the legs. Coverage of the legs does not increase the systemic temperature. Isolating the legs with a water-perfused heater is considered.