MEDICAL LASER THERAPY…Safe, Effective and Cost-Efficient!

By November 11, 2019 Veterinary Advice

A common reaction experienced by people when first introduced to the concept of medical laser therapy is skepticism. I was certainly one of these skeptics when I first read about this medical modality. To me, it sounded rather  “hokey” and “out there” but the more I researched the topic the more I became interested in learning even more about them.

Eventually, in fact, I became so convinced that I decided a few months ago to acquire a Class 1V therapy laser, and since then both my staff as well as myself have been very gratified and encouraged by the results so far.

Therapy lasers are a separate type of laser from CO2 surgical lasers and cosmetic lasers. In basic terms they are technologically advanced machines that use focused near-infrared light to penetrate into the body to target specific areas of disturbed body tissues resulting in very positive benefits to the unhealthy tissue. The result of this therapy is to assist these tissues to return to their normal function safely and much faster than they would have in normal innate healing processes.  

Laser therapy helps relieves pain, decrease inflammation and increase new blood vessel growth.  It also stimulates the immune system.  All of these benefits add up to accelerated healing and a more rapid return to normal function.

Other healthful and practical advantages include no requirement for sedation or anesthesia, relatively brief treatment times and often this therapeutic modality can allow for the reduction of the dosage of other medications decreasing the risk potential to a patient of unwanted drug side effects. 

Laser therapy is very safe.  In essence, the procedure energizes sub-optimally functioning cells, leaving optimally functioning healthy cells unaffected.  In other words, phototherapy, or photobiostimulation as it is sometimes called, stimulates only unhealthy tissues.

At this point you may be wondering how much information is available on the credibility of this treatment modality?  My personal research has convinced me that it is good, evidence-based medicine.  Therapeutic effects have been studies for almost 40 years with thousands of paper having been written on this subject.  (For those of you who wish to do their own research on the topic, a great Internet source is PubMed.gov (Search for therapy lasers or L.L.L.T referring to low level light therapy). Of course, it is not to be construed as a cure-all modality, but certainly can be considered a very useful adjunct to other methods of pain and healing management. 

Animals suffering from conditions such as arthritis, intervertebral disc disease, cystitis, pancreatitis, non-healing fractures,” hot spots”, asthma, chronic inflammatory bowel disease, wounds and ear disease, are all proven to benefit from medical laser therapy.  In general, it is a common consensus that 70 to 80% of patients have a positive response to therapy laser treatments. 

As I pointed out earlier, abundant research involving humans as well as animals continues to indicate the efficacy and safety of this evolving science. The majority of providers of higher-powered therapy laser machines have them equipped with protocol software that is upgraded over time allowing for optimum treatment success of various disease conditions.   Numerous reputable suppliers also provide online courses to allow clinicians to stay abreast of new developments worldwide. Additionally, these suppliers also provide excellent service and are diligent about ensuring safety of operation of these machines including eye protection of the operators, pets, and attending clients if they wish to be in the laser area with their pets.

I personally am feeling very satisfied with my decision to plunge into this exciting technology feet first. .   Expect some updates from me from time to time as my knowledge and experience with this medical modality continues to expand.

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