Laser Therapy Science and Clinical Studies

To date, there are now over 6000 Proof Positive Clinical Studies and Research Papers that reveal beyond a shadow of a doubt that Low-Level Laser Therapy aka Cold Laser Therapy (CLT) aka Photobiomodulation (PBM) is effective at treating a wide range of conditions that were previously untreatable, except sometimes through drugs and surgery. There are over 200,000 health care providers using cold lasers in their practice and over 800,000 laser users, so laser therapy is definitely NOT an “experimental” therapy. Research reveals how and why therapeutic lasers are exceptionally effective for pain relief, the reduction of inflammation, increasing circulation of both blood and lymph, and supporting the body to heal on a cellular level.

Further down you will find an online book which provides a compendium of scientific and clinical studies conducted by researchers and clinicians and published in journals which are properly notated on their respective pages. Before you scroll down to look at all the research studies I want to provide you with a short summary of what Cold Laser Equipment and also Class 4 Lasers are being successfully used for so that you can start to see the big picture. 

*Please bear in mind that results will vary from person to person. While many of the following clinical studies have shown positive results, no medical claims are being made other than for those issues such as pain and inflammation, for a specific lasers that have been cleared for such by the FDA. 

Controlled Double Blind Studies with Cold Laser Therapy

Following is a list of cold laser controlled, randomized, double-blind studies,* which have shown that Cold Laser Therapy is an effective treatment modality for a wide range of treatment indications such as:

  • Acne Vulgaris
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Ankle sprains
  • Arthritis
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Chronic back pain
  • Chronic neck pain
  • Epicondylitis
  • Herpes simplex
  • Lymphedema
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Oral mucositis
  • Shoulder pain
  • Sports injuries
  • Stroke
  • Temporomandibular dysfunction
  • Tinnitus

*Achilles tendinitis: Bjordal, J.M., et al. (2006). A randomized, placebo controlled trial of low level laser therapy for activated Achilles tendinitis with microdialysis measurement of peritendinous prostaglandin E2 concentrations. British Journal of Sports Medicine 40, pp. 75-80.

Acne vulgaris: Seaton, E.D., et al. (2003). Pulsed-dye laser treatment for inflammatory acne vulgaris: randomised controlled trial. The Lancet 362, pp. 1347-1352. Acute pain
(Review paper): Bjordal, J.M., et al. (2006). Low-Level Laser

Therapy in Acute Pine: A Systematic Review of Possible Mechanisms of Action and Clinical Effets in Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trials. Photomedicine and Laser Surgery 24(2), pp. 158-168.

Carpal tunnel syndrome: Ekim, A., et al. (2007). Effect of low level laser therapy in rheumatoid arthritis patients with carpal tunnel syndrome. Swiss Medical Weekly 23-24, pp. 347-352.

Chronic neck pain: Chow, R.T., et al. (2006). The effect of 300 mW, 830 nm laser on chronic neck pain: A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study. Pain 124(1-2), pp. 201-210.

Herpes simplex: Schindl, A., and Neumann, R. (1999). Low-Intensity Laser Therapy is an Effective Treatment for Recurrent Herpes Simplex Infection. Results from a Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study. Investigative Dermatology 113, pp. 221-223.

Myofascial Pain Syndrome

Gur, A., et al. (2004). Efficacy of 904 nm Gallium Arsenide Low Level Laser Therapy in the Management of Chronic Myofascial Pain in the Neck: A Double-Blind and Randomize-Controlled Trial.

Lasers in Surgery and Medicine 35, pp. 229-235.

Oral Mucositis: Bensadoun, R.J., et al. (1999). Low-energy He/Ne laser in the prevention of radiation-induced mucositis – A multicenter phase III randomized study in patients with head and neck cancer.

Support Care Cancer 7, DOI 10.1007/s005209900034.

Osteoarthritic Knee Pain

(Review paper): Bjordal, J.M., et al. (2007). Short-term efficacy of physical interventions in Osteoarthritic knee pain. A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised placebo-controlled trials. BNC – Musculoskeletal Disorders, DOI 10.1186/1471-2474-8-51.

Postmastectomy Lymphedema

Carati, C.J., et al. (2003). Treatment of Postmastectomy Lymphedema with Low-Level Laser Therapy.

American Cancer Society, DOI 10.1002/cncr.11641.

Stroke: Lampl, Y., et al. (2007).
Infrared Laser Therapy for Ischemic Stroke: A new Treatment Strategy. Results of the NeuroThera Effectiveness and Safety Trial-1

(NEST-1). Stroke, DOI 10.1161/STROKEAHA.106.478230.

Tendinitis and Myofascial Pain Syndrome

(includes Epicondylitis, trochanteritis, etc): Lögdberg-Andersson, M., et al. (1997). Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) of Tendinitis and Myofascial Pains – A Randomized, Double-Blind, Controlled Study. LLLT 9, pp. 79-86.

Tinnitus: Gungor, A., et al. (2007).
Effectiveness of transmeatal low power laser irradiation for chronic tinnitus.

The Journal of Laryngology & Otology, DOI 10.1017/S0022215107009619