What is cold laser therapy?

We have been using cold laser therapy in our clinic for a couple of years and continue to see great results for a wide range of conditions including back pain, neck pain, shoulder and knee injuries, bursitis, tennis and golfers elbow to name a few. A lot of people are asking “What is cold laser therapy?”  So here is a brief explanation.

It’s called cold laser because no heat is generated when the laser beam is pulsed. Another name for it is low level laser therapy (LLLT).  It was discovered that low level pulsed laser penetrated living tissue to a greater depth than continuous wave laser and produced no damaging heat.

In 1967 it was accidentally discovered that LLLT regrows hair and accelerates wound healing in mice. In 1979, Russian cosmonauts discovered that LLLT produced positive healing effects on human tissue.

Since then much research has taken place to show that low level laser activates the mitochondria of damaged cells to produce increased cellular energy (ATP), decreased inflammation and increased micro-circulation. These effects combine to produce the healing we observe while at the same time producing no adverse side effects.

Multi Radiance Medical launched in the USA in 2004. They combined low level super pulsed laser with an electro-magnetic field and infrared energy to have a more powerful effect. This is the type of laser therapy we use in our clinic. Strong levels of evidence exist for the use of LLLT for musculoskeletal pain, osteoarthritis, muscle trigger points, tissue repair and muscle fatigue. And just to confuse things a little, the accepted term in the research literature for this type of laser is photobiomodulation.

Photo   = light Bio  = life Modulation = stimulatory or inhibitory effects.

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