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Cold Laser Therapy

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What Is Cold Laser Therapy?(aka Low Level Laser Therapy)

Cold Laser Therapy (CLT) is a physical modality that emits photons (light) in very specific regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.  Laser therapy uses this light to penetrate tissue for increased blood flow and more rapid healing.  Cold Laser Therapy has been successfully used around the world for over 30 years, with no reported long-term side effects.   Cold Laser Therapy is the most researched and published modality in physical rehabilitation and has demonstrated a multitude of clinical benefits that includes its unique ability to influence the body on the cellular level.  Some of these influences lead to the following :

  • Rapid Cell Growth: CLT acclerates cellular reproduction and growth for faster wound healing.   i.e.) Sports injuries and repetitive movement injuries.
  • Faster Wound Healing:CLT stimulates fibroblast development and accelerates collagen synthesis in damaged tissues.  Collagen is the essential protein used to repair damaged tissue.  It is the substance that holds the cells together and has a high degree of elasticity.   i.e.) Soft tissue injuries, sports injuries, and overuse injuries.
  • Increased Metabolic Activity: CLT causes higher outputs of specific enzymes, greater oxygen and food particle loads for cells thus causing greater production of ATP (energy).  ATP is the major carrier of energy to all cells.  Increases in ATP allow cells to accept nutrients faster and get rid of waste products faster by increasing the energy level in the cell resulting in faster and better wound healing.   i.e.) Soft tissue injuries, sports injuries arthritis, and overuse injuries.
  • Reduced Fibrous Tissue Formation: CLT reduces formation of scar tissue.  By increasing collagen production less scar tissue is formed at the damaged site.  Scar tissue has little elasticity.  i.e.) Sports injuries, soft tissue injuries, and repetitive movement strains and overuse injuries.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Action:CLT helps to reduce swelling to offer enhanced joint mobility following injury.  i.e. ) Sports injuries, soft tissue injuries, arthritis and tendonitis.
  • Increased Lymphatic System Activity: Edema, which is the swelling or natural splinting process of the body, has two basic components.  The first is the liquid part, which can be evacuated by the blood system.  The second is comprised of proteins,which have to be evacuated by the lymphatic system.  Research has shown that the lymph vessel diameter and the flow of the lymph system can be doubled with the use of laser therapy.  The venous diameter and the arterial diameters can also be increased.  This means that both parts of edema (liquid and protein) can be evacuated at a much faster rate to relieve swelling and thus reducing pain as well.   i.e.) Sports injuries, soft tissue injuries, and overuse injuries.
  • Increased Phagocytosis:The process of cleaning up dead or degenerated cells.  Clean up must occur before healing can occur.    i.e.) Sports injuries, soft tissue injuries, arthritis, tendonitis, and shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, and ankle injuries for the purpose of "clean up" 
  • Reduce the Excitablility of Nervous Tissue: CLT speeds nerve cell processes, which decreases pain and numbness, associated with certain conditions.  The photons of light energy enter the body as negative ions.  This calls upon the body to send positive ions like calcium and others to go to the area being treated.  These ions assist in firing the nerves thereby relieving pain.   i.e.) Arthritis, soft tissue injuries, sports injuries and tendonitis.

Is Cold Laser Therapy Safe?

In the United States the FDA has ruled that the therapy is safe.  The laser used in our office is an FDA certified laser.  For the past 30 years the technology of Cold Laser Therapy (also known as Low Level Laser Therapy) has been formally accepted in Canada and in many other parts of the world such as Europe, Scandinavia, Russia and Japan.  In all this time there have been no recorded long-term adverse effecs from its use.  It is considered to be non-invasive, painless and safe.

How Does It Work?

Cold Laser Therapy uses laser light energy to stimulate cells to function optimaly.  Cold Laser Therapy is similar to photosynthesis in plants; sunlight is absorbed by the plant and converted into energy the plant can utlize for growth.  In the body, light sensitive chromophores and other elements within the cell absorb energy, initiating a series of important photochemical changes such as increased production of nitric oxide, singlet oxygen and ATP, as well as, an increase in the cell membrane's permeability.  The mitochondria and Kreb's Cycle stimulation initiates the production of ATP, providing the cell with the extra energy needed to accelerate the healing process and positively influence pain.  The additional energy and effects result in normalization of the cell function when cell function is impaired.  These activities can occur in all types of cells (muscle, ligament, cartilage, nerves, ect...)

Is Cold Laser Therapy Painful?

No.  Low level lasers do not generate perceivable heat.  Therefore, when the laser contacts the skin the patient experiences no warmth or burning as a result of the laser.  Most people feel nothing at all while a  few may feel a slight tingling (energy) during the treatment.

What Conditions Does Cold Laser Therapy Help Treat?

  • Acute and chronic spinal pain in neck, mid and low back
  • Acute and chronic joint pain in shoulders, elbows, wrists and hands
  • Acute and chronic joint pain in hips, knees, ankles, and feet
  • Arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis
  • Whiplash and spinal strain/sprain injuries
  • Pre and Post-Operative pain inflammed joints
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Plantar Fascitis
  • Neuralgia
  • Rotator Cuff injuries and impingement syndromes.

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Call us today at 502-241-8939 and ask how Cold Laser Therapy could help you!