The Healing Power of Class IV laserGrant
We are strong advocates for the healing power of low level laser, and more specifically Class IV lasers. From accelerating healing time for common strains/sprain to calming an arthritic joint we have witnessed the rapid healing effect of laser on many occasions in our office. These are not miracle cases. In fact, low-level laser therapy is based on a scientific literature of more than three thousand publications and more than two hundred clinical trials with positive results.
Almost every day we get asked, what does laser do? As early as the 1960’s it was known that lasers could heal. Early research showed that lasers could promote the growth of collagen fibers in skin tissues. A half a century later, the effects of laser are now much better understood. All of the cells in our body are light sensitive. In short, the light energy from low level lasers are absorbed by tissue cells which stimulates and accelerates cellular activity for the body to heal itself. For a more detailed explanation of the biological effect of laser and the difference between Class 3 and Class 4 laser check out this you tube video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dB9MIW9fduk
Clinical conditions we commonly treat with Class IV laser:
-soft tissue (muscle, tendon, ligament, joint capsule, fascia etc) strains/sprains/tears (link to Dave calf tear blog)
-fat pad syndrome
-repetitive strain injuries (ie. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, tennis/golf elbow)
A recent book by Author Norman Doidge, MD titled The Brain’s Way of Healing dedicates a whole chapter to the healing power of lasers. Dr. Doidge details research that lasers also have the capacity to heal the brain. This poses an interesting therapeutic option for complex concussion cases as well. We will eagerly await further research for laser therapy’s use in treating post-concussion syndrome. If you are skeptical of lasers use in tissue healing, check out Dr. Doidge’s book.
If low level lasers are such a powerful healing modality, why does it seem to be a relative mystery? If you grew up in the 70’s or 80’s in the USSR or in eastern Europe (or work in Veterinarian care) chances are you familiar with the medical use of lasers. However it was not until 2002 that the FDA approved the first low-intensity laser therapy device in the US (Class 3) and later in 2006 the FDA approved Class 4 lasers. Health Canada began approval of Class 4 lasers in 2011. Clinical use of therapeutic lasers simply hasn’t been around very long in this part of the world. With an ever growing momentum of support, both clinically and academically, it won’t be long before patients are saying beam me up doc.