Cognitive impairment is considered to be a result of oxidative stress and disturbances in inflammatory status. Whole-body cryotherapy (WBC), which is a short exposure to extremely low temperatures, probably regulates the release of cytokines and nitric oxide. The hypothesis is that WBC may be useful in the therapy of mild cognitive impairments (MCI).
The effect of the whole-body cryotherapy (WBC) on cognitive impairments was investigated.
In this study the observation of several biological factors and cognitive functions were conducted to analyse the WBC influence on cognitive deficits.
People with MCI participated in 10 WBC sessions divided for experimental group (−110 °C till −160 °C) or control group (−10 °C till −20 °C). The MoCa test (scores 26 and lower) was used for inclusion criteria. Cognitive functions were measured with: TYM, DemTect and SLUMS at baseline and in follow-up. Biological factors (cytokines, BDNF, NO) were also assessed.
It was shown that memory domains in experimental group improved after WBC sessions. Also modulatory effect on inflammatory mediators in plasma was shown. The results of this study consist of the comparison of experimental and control groups regarding to cognitive functions as well as biological factors.
Whole-body cryotherapy may be supposed to improve cognitive functions in MCI patients. The modulatory effect of WBC on immunological response may be considered as one of possible mechanisms of its action. However, there is no confirmation how long the effects resist so further investigations are needed.