What is Laser Therapy?
Low-level laser therapy is a form of therapy that applies low-level lasers to the surface of the body which has been proven to stimulate and enhance cell function. Laser (which stands for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation) works through a process called photobiomodulation. When the laser is applied to the skin, the cells absorb the laser; this then produces energy that increases circulation, reduces inflammation in the targeted area, and overall improves healing.
How does this benefit athletes with sports injuries?
In a study that involved 41 adult patients (22 male and 19 female) laser therapy was applied to each subject at points of pain and/or acupuncture points at a maximum treatment of 10 times. The patients were asked to provide a score out of 10 on a pain relief scale (low numbers being good and high numbers being bad). The rate of effectiveness in patients was 65.9% in all sports injuries (jumper’s knee, tennis elbow, and achilles tendinitis being of the highest effectiveness).
What does this mean?
Based on the conclusions this study made regarding laser therapy for sports injuries, we can conclude that laser therapy is indeed an effective modality that can be used to treat individuals who are suffering from sport related pain and/or injury.
Nagging pain and injuries can be very hard to deal with, and the healing process can get to be very lengthy. If you are someone who is dealing with nagging pain or an injury that is sport related, laser therapy may be something you should talk to Dr. Christine about the next time you are in the office.
Morimoto Y, Saito A, Tokuhashi Y. Low level laser therapy for sports injuries. Laser Ther. 2013;22(1):17-20. doi: 10.5978/islsm.13-or-01. PMID: 24155545; PMCID: PMC3799051.