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J Appl Physiol (1985). 2006 Jul;101(1):283-8. Epub 2006 Apr 20.

Effect of low-level laser (Ga-Al-As 655 nm) on skeletal muscle fatigue induced by electrical stimulation in rats.

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Department of Pharmacology, Laboratory of Biochemical Pharmacology of Free Radicals, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of São Paulo, Brazil.


We investigated whether low-level laser therapy (LLLT) can reduce muscular fatigue during tetanic contractions in rats. Thirty-two male Wistar rats were divided into four groups receiving either one of three different LLLT doses (0.5, 1.0, and 2.5 J/cm2) or a no-treatment control group. Electrical stimulation was used to induce six tetanic muscle contractions in the tibial anterior muscle. Contractions were stopped when the muscle force fell to 50% of the initial value for each contraction (T50%). There was no significant difference between the 2.5 J/cm2 laser-irradiated group and the control group in mean T50% values. Laser-irradiated groups (0.5 and 1.0 J/cm2) had significantly longer T50% values than the control group. The relative peak force for the sixth contraction in the laser-irradiated groups were significantly higher at 92.2% (SD 12.6) for 0.5 J/cm2, 83.2% (SD 20.5) for 1.0 J/cm2, and 82.9% (SD 18.3) for 2.5 J/cm2 than for the control group [50% (SD 15)]. Laser groups receiving 0.5 and 1.0 J/cm2 showed significant increases in mean performed work compared with both the control group and their first contraction values. Muscle damage was indirectly measured by creatine kinase levels in plasma. A distinct dose-response pattern was found in which 1.0 and 2.5 J/cm2 LLLT groups had significantly lower creatine kinase levels than the 0.5 J/cm2 LLLT group and the control group. We conclude that LLLT doses of 0.5 and 1.0 J/cm2 can prevent development of muscular fatigue in rats during repeated tetanic contractions.

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