Hyperthermic Oncology

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High temperatures have been used to destroy tumor cells through a treatment known as Hypothermic Oncology. Hyperthermia is an old treatment yet new tools and more precise delivery of heat has allowed hypothermia to be used for cancer treatment. Though rarely used, recent research is suggesting it be used by oncologists with every patient because of its immune stimulating effect.

Another reason for traditional oncologists to pay attention to heat is that hyperthermia provides synergies with most conventional treatment modalities, boosts their efficacy helping to re-sensitize previously non-effective treatments. Moreover, as an advantage of heat treatments is increased blood flow increasing chemo-efficacy and delivering more oxygen for radiotherapy success.

Thermal medicine refers to the manipulation of whole body or specific tissue temperature as a prelude to, or as the main treatment of diseases. From ancient times we read ‘Give me the power to produce fever and I will cure all disease,’ and ‘If indeed any were so good a physician as to be able to produce fever, it would not be necessary to look for any other remedy in sickness.’

Heat has been used to treat various types of diseases for centuries that decreases the transmission of pain signals to the brain. There is no doubt that heat is comforting and when patients body temperature is low heat can be a life saver. Even with dying patients heat should be used to make them as comfortable as possible.


Dr. Chen-Ting Lee, Dr. Thomas Mace, and Dr. Elizabeth A. Repasky published a paper in the International Journal of Hyperthermia giving us reason to use thermal therapy in the treatment of cancer. Mild thermal stress has the opposite effect to that of hypoxia (low oxygen). Adding heat to the body is a way of increasing blood flow and oxygen delivery to the cells while enhancing cytotoxic activity of human NK cells. 

Natural killer cells (also known as NK cells, K cells, and killer cells) are a type of lymphocyte (a white blood cell) and a component of innate immune system. NK cells play a major role in the host-rejection of both tumors and viral infected cells.

Unlike hypoxia, mild temperature elevation enhances tumor cell recognition as it increases the cancer killing potential of NK cells. Hyperthermia allows for greater T cell activation and increased anti-tumor T cell response. Thus, these researchers suggest that thermal therapy could be used to help reverse at least some of the negative effects of hypoxia on the anti-tumor immune response. Hypoxia and Hypocapnia (lowered CO2) are both drivers of cancer.

There are two different ways in which hyperthermia can be used to treat cancer. The first is called local hyperthermia or thermal ablation, and it is used to treat a small area of cells, such as a tumor. This treatment is more successful when used to treat tumors that are located on or near the skin’s surface. In these treatments, the area is generally heated to temperatures between 40 and 45°C (104 to 113°F).

The second type is called regional hyperthermia, and it uses low heat to elevate the temperature of a region of the body, such as a limb or organ. Generally, the temperature isn’t hot enough to destroy tissues, but can be combined with chemotherapy or radiation to make these treatments more effective.

One of the easiest, safest and most effective way of treating disease, including cancer, is to increase body temperature with infrared therapy. It is a foundational treatment, which has profound ramifications for thyroid sufferers, patients with adrenal issues and even for people with restless leg syndrome.

98,6° F (37C)  is the ideal body temperature for optimal health. That temperature is the guarantor for good blood circulation and is the mainstay for vitality and strong immune system strength. Low temperatures between 95°- 97° F is common with patients with chronic illnesses.

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Increased body temperature is correlated mathematically with increased immune system strength. Normal core temperatures are at the exact temperature at which all the functions of the human body can operate with optimal efficiency. The same can be said about pH because all physiological processes are pH sensitive. Thus, body temperature is crucial to address when treating cancer or any other disease. Thermal therapy is ideal when used in combination with other therapies.