2006 年 69 巻 4 号 p. 223-233
In Japan, balneotherapy is now on fashion as one of complementary therapies. Nevertheless, in the ageing society, we are facing to needs in relation to evidence-based health care on every direction. This paper reviews current articles on the use of balneotherapy in health care.
We made a systematic review on related articles in the Medline and Cochrane Library database from 1966 to 2005 that included randomized controlled and non-randomized clinical trials using balneotherapy. We also tried to classify spas in determining the chemical composition and their health effects. Ten kinds of spas (acidic, salty, sulfur, magnesium, carbon dioxide, arsenical-ferruginose, selenium, radon, sulfate, bicarbonate) were classified, and three disorders such as skin, joint/muscleskelton and circulatory system have been mainly treated by balneothrapy. In half of articles, randomized controlled trial appeared as the comparative method.
In future, certain developed methods are requested to investigate effects of spas consisting of huge diversity of chemical content.