Cold laser therapy beams light energy at your skin to reduce pain and inflammation deep within an area of your body, like your knee. It’s used to treat knee pain from osteoarthritis (OA), as well as low back pain, and sports injuries.
Cold laser therapy was first developed in the 1960s. It’s also called low-level laser therapy (LLLT), soft laser therapy, or photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT).
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Cold laser therapy beams light energy at your skin. The device uses low levels of energy or photons. Unlike higher-frequency lasers used for surgery, they don’t heat or cut your skin. Photons penetrate deep into a painful joint. The light triggers chemical changes that help damaged cells and tissues heal and regrow.
The doctor will hold the handheld device close to or touch the applied area for 30 seconds to a few minutes. This light energy will pass through the skin into the tissues. The light energy helps to reduce inflammation and promote the regeneration of damaged tissues.
It generally takes 3-4 treatments to feel better and the treatments may vary depending on how much is the severity.
LLLT does not involve taking any medications. While taking opioids or other heavy drugs can be addictive, cold laser therapy is the best option for patients seeking a treatment without drugs.