We continue to find new, innovative ways to use the high-powered, cold-therapy laser. This is a picture of Takota, a 9 year old, neutered male golden retriever. Takota has hypothyroidism, as well as severe seasonal allergies.
His thyroid condition and his allergies are all well controlled at this point, but he recently developed a lick granuloma on one front leg. Lick granulomas form when a dog (they don’t occur in cats) licks a given spot on a leg incessantly. As the pet licks the leg it gets irritated; as it gets irritated it triggers increased licking. Increased licking causes increased irritation, and a perpetual loop is formed.
There are many ways to treat lick granulomas, and none is any better than the others. Each case is different, and different treatments work for different cases.
We’ve recently started to use the K-Laser Cube 4 cold therapy laser to treat these areas. The Cube 4 is a 15 watt Class 4 cold-therapy laser. It is the highest powered cold therapy laser on the market today.
Tissue Effects of the Cold-Therapy Laser
Cold therapy laser has many benefits and absolutely no side effects. Among other benefits, it:
- Increases blood supply to the treated area
- Decreases inflammation
- Decreases pain, irritation and itching
- Increases oxygenation of treated tissues
- Reduces free radical formation in the area. (Free radicals are toxic molecules that form when tissues and cells are damaged. Their presence causes further tissue damage.)
- Increases energy production and healing in affected areas
This is just a short list of all the benefits of the cold therapy laser. The laser can be used on any tissue in the body to achieve the results we just listed. In general, anywhere there is inflammation can benefit from laser therapy.
Differences in Cold-Therapy Laser Machines
Our laser – the K-Laser Cube 4 – is the highest powered laser on the market. This is important, as some areas that we treat are deep within the body. For instance, hip dysplasia in large breeds, such as labs and rottweilers, is a serious problem that can lead to chronic breakdown. To treat the hips in some of these dogs that weigh up to and over 120 lbs, it takes a high-powered laser to achieve maximum efficacy.
Many of the lasers currently sold in the veterinary market are low-powered lasers. Many are less than 1 watt, which means they aren’t even Class 4 lasers. These lasers simply do not have the power to penetrate tissues more than 1-2 mm. They cannot treat deeper tissues, or tissues with chronic damage.
Other than price, there is no advantage to these low powered lasers. Our high-powered K-Laser Cube 4 has no side effects. It is very comfortable for the pet, and adds only a slight warming sensation to the treatment area. Most pets lay comfortably while being treated.
Besides being the highest powered laser on the market, the Cube 4 also uses 4 separate wavelengths of laser light. This is done intentionally, as each wavelength of laser light achieves a different purpose. Different cells respond to different wavelengths, and by covering a broader spectrum of wavelengths more tissues can be positively impacted. Most of the cheaper laser models on the market use just one – or at best 2 – laser wavelengths.
As our knowledge of the therapeutic effects of high-powered cold laser therapy grows, so will our ability to positively impact more pets and more problem areas in the body. Because we have the absolute best laser available today, there is no therapeutic treatment we won’t be able to provide.