Laser Therapy FAQs
What is laser therapy?
Laser therapy is the use of specific wavelengths of light to create a therapeutic effect. These effects include improved healing time, pain reduction, increased circulation, and decreased inflammation.
How does it work?
The laser emits photons, or packets of light energy, that penetrate deep into tissue without damaging it. These photons are absorbed within the mitochondria of the cells and induce a chemical change called photo-bio-modulation. This light energy then inspires production of ATP in the cell. ATP is the fuel that cells need for repair and rejuvenation. Impaired or injured cells do not make this fuel at an optimal rate. Increased ATP production leads to healthier cells, healthier tissue, and healthier animals.
What are the benefits of laser therapy?
There are numerous documented benefits of therapeutic laser including: pain relief, inflammation reduction, acceleration of tissue healing, improved blood circulation, reduction in fibrous (scar) tissue formation, improved nerve function, acceleration of wound healing, and stimulation of acupuncture points. All of these benefits are provided without any negative side effects.
What can I expect during treatment?
The laser is administered through a non-invasive, hand-held device to treat the affected area. The device is constantly in motion over the treatment area to ensure the laser is being delivered to the affected area at the appropriate dose. Your pet will feel gentle and soothing warmth. Many pets will relax, much like you would during a good massage, as the laser is administered. The pain relief allows your pet to be comfortable and any anxiety will typically dissipate quickly.
What can I expect after laser treatment?
You might see a change in activity when your pet comes home. For some it might be increased activity and others may be more relaxed. This is due to the pain relief and reduction in inflammation.
How often should a patient receive laser therapy?
The frequency of treatments depends on the nature of the condition being treated. Chronic problems respond well when treatments are received two to three times a week, tapering to once every week or two as improvement is seen. Acute conditions may need to be treated daily, particularly if they are accompanied by significant pain.
How many treatments does it take?
The length of treatments depends on the nature of the condition being treated. Results can sometimes be seen after the first treatment, but chronic conditions may require six treatments before tapering to a maintenance protocol.
How long does it take before results are felt/seen?
You may see relief immediately after the first treatment as pain and inflammation are reduced. For example, you may see better mobility for joint conditions, drying and healing of dermatological issues, faster healing for wounds and incisions, or your pet may simply seem more relaxed and comfortable. For some conditions, a series of treatments may be necessary before you see results due to the severity or complexity of the condition. Each pet is different, and treatments are unique for your pet’s specific needs.
Can it be used with other methods of treatment?
Laser therapy is frequently used in conjunction with other forms of therapy including pain medications, chiropractic adjustments, massage, and electrotherapy. Laser therapy is also used following surgery and dental procedures.
What does laser therapy cost?
The cost of therapeutic laser treatments is dependent on the type of treatment being provided and the length of treatments. The cost of treatment would be discussed at the time of your veterinary consultation.