What is laser therapy?
Laser therapy uses an infrared laser light to harmlessly penetrate deep into tissues to reduce pain, reduce swelling, reduce inflammation, and speed healing.
The energy emitted by the beam of laser light is absorbed by the cells, and this energy is converted into chemical, not thermal, energy. This chemical change stimulates the cells to help reduce pain, swelling, inflammation, and speeds healing. Laser therapy also reduces inflammation by increasing vasodilation, activating the lymphatic drainage system, and reducing pro-inflammatory mediators.
How are treatments given?
The laser light is delivered to the affected area through a non-invasive hand-piece. Horses often feel immediate relief and begin displaying relaxed body language such as licking and chewing. A typical treatment protocol is 3 treatments the first week, 2 treatments the second week, and then treatments once weekly for maintenance. It is important to remember that all injuries are unique and may require individual treatment plans.
What can laser therapy treat?
Laser therapy is beneficial for almost any condition where inflammation or pain are present. Common conditions include:
- Tendonitis/suspensory desmitis
- Back pain
Studies indicate that laser-treated wounds heal in a third to a half faster than the time required in normal healing. Skin wounds, abrasions, bite injuries, dermatitis, and burns all respond well to laser therapy.