Therapeutic laser is used to treat injuries, wounds, neurological conditions and pain; clinical studies have repeatedly confirmed its positive effects. Whether your pet is recovering from trauma or injury or simply dealing with the aches and pains of aging, therapeutic laser has been shown to provide relief and speed healing.
What is Therapeutic Laser?
Laser is an acronym for “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation. Laser light differs from “normal” light, in the sense that it is a single, concentrated wavelength. This light energy is absorbed into tissues stimulating tissue-repair mechanisms and reducing pain via a process called photobiomodulation.
What conditions benefit from Laser?
- Musculoskeletal pain especially chronic pain conditions
- Ligament sprains and tears
- Muscle strains
- Spinal injuries
- Osteoarthritis and inflammatory joint disease
What are the results of therapeutic laser?
A clinical trial* showed that in addition to the reduction of lameness and pain in laser treated dogs, there was also a marked decrease in the dog’s reliance on NSAIDs. Approximately 80% of patients were able to half their NSAID dose after 6 weeks.
*Fahie et al. 2013, JAVMA 243 (9): 1291-1297
How does therapeutic laser work?
The light wave emitted by the laser device is absorbed by the body, and this is the key basis for the effectiveness of laser. Therapeutic laser enhances blood flow circulation and increases cellular activity in the treated area. This in turn increases the production of essential growth factors to advance tissue healing. Laser has also been shown to mediate a number of cellular activities to reduce inflammation and decrease pain-stimulating chemicals. This results in relief of pain for the animal.
Are there any risks associated with therapeutic laser?
The safety of laser is well established, with no known adverse effects in animals. There are a small number of conditions where laser therapy may not be appropriate, and if applicable this would be discussed in detail with you during your consult.
What to expect during laser therapy?
A plan for therapeutic laser therapy is created in your pet’s initial consult and follow up treatments may be scheduled independently or as part of your recheck. Our rehabilitation consultant will preset the laser device to required settings for the condition being treated. The laser will then be applied directly to the area of treatment for a period of approximately 2 – 10 minutes, depending on the treatment protocol. Most animals will feel some warmth from the laser as it is applied to the treatment area, which provides comfort and often causes relaxation. You and your pet will be provided with protective goggles (or doggles!) for your safety and owners will usually stay for the duration of the treatment.
SASH’s team of Sports Medicine & Rehab Veterinarians and Rehab Therapists are Australia’s leading experts in providing physiotherapy and laser therapy services for pets. For more information, contact SASH and book an appointment by clicking the button below.