Laser therapy (also called “photobiomodulation”) involves using light energy to produce positive effects in the body. These effects include the reduction of inflammation, edema (swelling with fluid), and pain, and the promotion of healing in a variety of conditions.
An adjunct treatment to more traditional medications and therapies, laser therapy can be used for chronic pain conditions such as arthritis, as well acutely painful conditions, such as an injury or surgery. Laser therapy is also used for a variety of medical conditions such as inflammatory bowel and bladder disease, pancreatitis, and kidney disease.
Several journals in human medicine are dedicated to the ongoing research in the use of laser therapy. Some research is focused on laser therapy’s effects on mitochondria, the so-called “engine” of the cells. Other areas of research focus on the release of certain growth factors following application of laser therapy.
Veterinary laser therapy was popular in performance horses before becoming more commonly used with companion animals.
Laser therapy can also be used on acupuncture points with patients who resist needle placement or with patients who are too small for traditional acupuncture needles (e.g., pet birds). The laser used by Island Mobile Paws has a special tip which allows the light energy to be focused at acupuncture points.