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Arthritis Res Ther. 2013 Oct 29;15(5):120. doi: 10.1186/ar4354.

Can osteoarthritis be treated with light?

Abstract

Osteoarthritis is becoming more problematic as the population ages. Recent reports suggest that the benefit of anti-inflammatory drugs is unimpressive and the incidence of side effects is worrying. Low-level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) is an alternative approach with no known side effects and with reports of substantial therapeutic efficacy in osteoarthritis. In this issue of Arthritis Research & Therapy, Alves and colleagues used a rat model of osteoarthritis produced by intra-articular injection of the cartilage-degrading enzyme papain to test 810-nm LLLT. A single application of LLLT produced significant reductions in inflammatory cell infiltration and inflammatory cytokines 24 hours later. A lower laser power was more effective than a higher laser power. However, more work is necessary before the title question can be answered in the affirmative.

PMID:
24286607
[PubMed - in process]
PMCID:
PMC3978432
Free PMC Article
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