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Carson Robertson
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Laser Therapy for Peripheral Neuropathy or Nerve Pain

Laser therapy has proven to be an effective treatment for numerous injuries because of its ability to decrease inflammation and pain while enhancing healing. It can also be a treatment for peripheral neuropathy, which is a condition that effects the nerves in arms and legs. People will peripheral neuropathy can experience numbness, tingling, hot, cold, pain, or a "just not right sensation" in their hands and feet.

Lower Level Laser Therapy has been shown to effectively:

  • Promote microcirculation in the irradiated area
  • Increase nerve functional activity
  • Increase the rate of axon growth and myelinization
  • Improve regeneration of the injured nerve
  • Improves peripheral nerve function

In a study measuring the effects of low level laser on neurovascular function of diabetic peripheral neuropathy, 5.7 J/cm² of 850nm were applied to both plantar surfaces and the lumbar spine three times a week for four weeks. These treatments produced an increase peroneal and sural nerve NCV and amplitude, and improved microcirculation in treated areas. VAS pain levels decreased by 26% compared to the control group.

This type of treatment requires a class IV laser to achieve the Joules necessary to effectively cover the appropriate surface area in the lumbar spine and feet. The Class IV K Laser can produce up to 1200 Joules per minute.

The K Laser's increased power output allows for larger treatment areas, affect deeper tissue, and greatly enhance healing. The class IV laser is much more effective and has many more applications because of its increased power output, and we are excited to offer it as treatment options. This is not the same cold laser that you have seen in clinics the last 5 years. We have utilized a class III laser for several years that produces 6 Joules per minute and is appropriate for superficial injuries. We did see results with the class III laser, but it is effectiveness is very limited compared to class IV.

Our protocol for treatment follows the study design for laser treatment and application. Depending on the patient, we may include strengthening exercises, stretches, electric stimulation, massage therapy, or proprioception balance exercises to address any foot, ankle, knee, or back issues.

For more information on how cold lasers decrease nerve pain and how they work visit Cold Laser for Nerve Pain .

Laser therapy protocol will be covered under Medicare and health insurance for physical therapy treatment.

Eric Robins PT has 30 years of clinical physical therapy experience. He has a treatment emphasis on senior patients and their joint pain. He can be reached at (480) 812-1800.