Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Hyperthermia therapy is the use of heat to damage or kill cancer cells.

Hyperthermia therapy is the use of heat to damage or kill cancer cells. It is used to increase the effectiveness of other cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy. In some situations, hyperthermia may used by itself to kill cancer cells directly.

Hyperthermia can be delivered via several methods. For the therapy to be effective, the proper amount of heat must be applied to a specific area over a given period of time.

Hyperthermia uses heat between 106 degrees Fahrenheit and 113 degrees Fahrenheit (41 to 45 degrees Celsius) to alter the cancer cells while preventing the surrounding cells from becoming damaged.

At present, hyperthermia therapy is considered to be an experimental procedure and is not widely available. Only about 30 centers in the United States offer this treatment, according to the American Cancer Society.

However, there are many clinical trials under way exploring the use of hyperthermia therapy to treat several types of cancer.

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