Arthritis naftalan therapy


Naftalan therapy

Naftalan therapy is conducted by applying a rare therapeutic type of naphthenic oil - naphthalan in modern medicine, for treating certain skin and rheumatic diseases.

Naftalan, a natural mineral oil, is a natural therapeutic agent. It does not cause skin irritation and is not cancerogenic. Besides its mechanical and thermal effects, naftalan also has a significant bioactive effect on the body. In the case of inflammatory rheumatism, reduction of inflammatory activity, reduction of swelling and redness, alleviation of pain, improvement of the general condition, and reduced intensity and shortened duration of "morning stiffness".

Iontophoresis with naftalan

The therapeutic medium, naftalan, driven by an electric field, is introduced from the cathode into the affected area.


Naftalan is applied as the contact medium between the ultrasound probe and the targeted body area. Application of the sonophoresis onto small hand and feet joints is performed in a naftalan bath into which the ultrasound probe is immersed.


A crude solid preparation containing 30% naftalan, a mixture of paraffin, wax and camphor is applied as a compress or by dipping into dissolved media, as with paraffin application. This thermotherapy procedure results in an extremely prolonged thermal effect and a very pleasant reaction.

Applying naftalan under occlusive dressing

Applying naftalan onto the skin under a PVC foil as occlusive dressing is often done at night to treat the affected areas.


Hydrotherapy is carried out in a pool filled with Thermo mineral water. Water is extracted from a depth of 1,300 m. As regards its chemical composition and balneological classification, it is salty water which contains minerals, iodine, sodium-chloride, etc. The main balneological active agent is NaCl in the concentration of 1.37 %, and the other is heat. The water temperature at the source is 60°C and in the pool, after it has been cooled, about 34°C. Exercises with the physical therapist's supervision are carried out in the pool which can be used for free recreation and bathing in the afternoons and weekends.


The patients are especially fond of massage which is carried out by experienced masseuses in the following forms:

  • underwater massage,
  • manual massage of the entire body or partial body massage.


  • massotherapy,
  • cryotherapy.


  • UVB,
  • UVA.


Naftalan's anti-inflammatory effect works on patients with rheumatic diseases.


When taking the naftalan bath, the patient is immersed in the naftalan oil medium at the temperature of 34 to 38°C up to his/her shoulders, for the duration of 8 to 14 minutes. The patient is covered with naftalan and exposed to UVA - UVB lamp light for a duration of 15 to 20 minutes.


Naftalan can be applied as follows: a) general application of the naftalan therapy through: naftalan baths in the bathtub and applying naftalan to the entire body.


This therapy yields specific rehabilitation effects even in the case of inflammatory rheumatism because pain is alleviated, swelling is reduced, muscle tension is relaxed and the previously limited range of motion is increased.

Ivana, Patient Coordinator

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Ivana, ZagrebMed patient coordinator