What is Laser Therapy?
Laser therapy uses a beam of light able to penetrate deeply into tissues and induce chemical changes in cells. This is called photo – bio – stimulation.
What does it do?
The particles of light or photons penetrate damaged cells and stimulate healing and pain relief within those tissues. Therapeutic lasers have no effect on normal cells. They are not simple heat treatments, but rather a method of increasing cellular metabolism. This speeds up and facilitates the healing process.
Can it hurt my pet?
Therapeutic lasers are not the same as cutting lasers used in surgery. They will not burn but will create warmth in the treated area.
What can it treat?
Most conditions that are associated with inflammation, wounds or pain can be treated.
- Post-surgical pain, wound healing and swelling
- Chronic inflammatory and/or painful conditions such as arthritis, nerve entrapment, joint or muscle pain/swelling.
- Chronic and acute infections such as anal sac infections, moist dermatitis or “hot spots”, interdigital cysts, ear infections.
- Non-healing wounds
- Laser treatment Improves nerve function following injury
- Lasers can be used as “needleless” acupuncture point stimulation
Can laser therapy be used on people?
Laser therapy was discovered in Hungary in 1967 and used in the Soviet Union and China during the 1970’s – 1980’s. In 1993 research on laser treatments at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in Princeton lead to the effort to compile data to comply with FDA regulations and in 1998 the North American Association for Laser Therapy was established.
Our Class IV laser is the same one currently used by the Yankees, Knicks and many other professional sports teams.
How long are treatments?
Treatment sessions can be as short a five minutes if one small area is involved and up to thirty minutes for multiple joints in the case of severe arthritis.
How many treatments are needed?
The frequency of treatments is as important as the number of treatments. We usually advise six treatments for most cases, sometimes more for acute conditions. Generally we treat three times the first week, twice the second week and once the third. The effects of laser therapy are cumulative and therefore not as successful if many days pass between initial treatments.
How much does it cost?
We have priced treatments based on time and type of laser used (we have two). We created a package of six treatments of less than 15 minutes each, six between 15 and 30 each and individual treatment prices. Ask the doctor which would be appropriate for your pet and we will explain the treatment schedule and costs.
Have you ever used laser treatments on any of your own pets?
My cat Foo Fee was a chronic vomiter. She improved with dietary changes but I would still find “presents” around the house. Endoscopic biopsy revealed inflammatory bowel disease, a not uncommon diagnosis in cats. I had several options including daily Pepcid plus oral steroids, immune suppressive drug treatments, more diet trials or just live with it.
I tried laser and it worked. After about 8-10 treatments her vomiting was reduced by 80-90%. Not perfect but I can live with it and she is on no medications.
This was only one case and not a guarantee that each case would result in the same success but I had a definitive diagnosis and now a new approach to the problem.
– Dr Y.