Low Level Laser Therapy
Researchers who are involved in low level laser therapy are producing more knowledgeable information. What I mean is that they have learned from past research, and are coming up with more knowledgeable questions, and more detailed answers. The early researchers weren’t exactly sure about dosages and protocols, and we still aren’t sure today. We are, still, narrowing it down, bit by bit.
One of the classic cells that can be counted on to respond to LLLT is the fibroblast. Fibroblasts are cells that lay down a microscopic framework of a thin web, if you will, of tough tissue. They also vary, and produce other types of tissues as well. They are called into action when there has been injury and cell destruction. They are called into action with repetitive stress.
The researchers of this study chose injured fibroblasts to work on, and used a red (HeNe) (632.8 nm) laser for two consecutive days. The cells received 2.5, 5,, and 16 J/cm2, in three different groups. Three treatments at 2.5 J/cm2 or 1 treatment at 5 J/cm2 produced significant cell multiplication and movement. 16 J/cm2 inhibited the same functions, as well as decreasing ATP production. This is interesting because one of the things LLLT is known for is that it typically increases ATP production.
I feel that 1-2 J/cm2 (10-20 seconds) is a good range to use for a 100 mW therapeutic laser. With small 5 mW lasers, it is different. Because of the high time of illumination factor, we can see results with as little as 0.3-1.0 J/cm2. A 5 mW laser pointer moved against the skin, covering 1 square centimeter, will put out up to 0.3 J/cm2 every 60 seconds.
Effect of Multiple Exposures of Low-Level Laser Therapy on the Cellular Responses of Wounded Human Skin Fibroblasts
Denise Hawkins, Heidi Abrahamse. Photomedicine and Laser Surgery. December 2006, 24(6): 705-714. doi:10.1089/pho.2006.24.705.