Sports Med Article Critique | Ice | Medicine

Lucien Knechtli Sports Med 1: Article critique I.

The purpose of this study was to determine the differences in affectivity different kinds of ice: crushed ice, cubed ice, and wetted ice. Previous studies had compared ice with various other cooling implements such as ice massages, frozen gel packs, and cold-water submersion, but the people who conducted this study were unable to find any other studies that compared types of ice, so they decided to conduct it themselves. Their more specific aims were to investigate the total amount of temperature change and the length of time that the tissue remained cool after different applications of ice. They hypothesized that the wetted ice would be the most effective, followed by the cubed, then crushed ice. The testers used six healthy men and women, with each group being similar in measurements relevant to the study (height, weight, age, lateral calf skin fold, and calf girth). None of the participants had anything which might have affected results, including past diseases, disorders, or injuries which affect the lower leg. The study was conducted by measuring the intramuscular temperature using a 26-gauge, 4 cm microprobe and cutaneous temperature using a surface thermocouple. They ensured that each patient had an equal amount of skin area exposed to the treatments, and fixed the measuring devices in place. All the ice packs were made by placing the ice into 22 X 40-cm clear, 1-mil polyethylene bags, removing the air, and then tying with a knot. The crushed and cubed ice were created by placing 2000 ml of each in the bag, while the wetted ice ones had 2000 ml ice and 300 ml of room-temp water. They recorded the temperature every 30 seconds for a 20-minute period, a 20 minute treatment period, and a 120 minute recovery period. Other researches only used a 2 minute to 5 minute baseline, or have had other issues with their recordings. The 20 minute baseline ensured that all temps had reached a steady state. They used a 3 X 3 analysis of variance with repeated measures to determine statistical differences in surface and intramuscular temperatures over time between different ice treatments. It appears that the statistical analysis is pretty accurate, and that there is enough of a difference between crushed / cubed ice to determine that wetted ice is the most effective by far. The outcome of the study showed that wetted ice produced temperatures about 2 degrees lower than crushed ice, and 1.2 degrees lower than cubed ice during treatment, and that wetted ice had an even larger advantage over crushed and cubed ice during the recovery stage: 3.1 degrees lower than cubed and 2.6 degrees lower than crushed. Intramuscularly, wetted ice produced lower temps than crushed ice from minute two of treatment to minute 75 of recovery. Its mean temps were at least .5 degrees lower than those produced by cubed ice from the end of treatment until minute 30 of recovery.

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