Laser Therapy Research

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The thermal impact of phototherapy with concurrent super-pulsed lasers and red and infrared LEDs on human skin

Lasers Med Sci.

Vanessa dos Santos GrandinéttiEduardo Foschini MirandaDouglas Scott JohnsonPaulo Roberto Vicente de PaivaShaiane Silva TomazoniAdriane Aver VaninGianna Móes Albuquerque-PontesLucio FrigoRodrigo Labat MarcosPaulo de Tarso Camillo de CarvalhoErnesto Cesar Pinto Leal-Junior

8/28/2015 - Postgraduate Program in Biophotonics Applied to Health Sciences, Nove de Julho University, Rua Vergueiro, 235, São Paulo, SP, 01504-001, Brazil.
From the very first reports describing the method of action of phototherapy, the effects have been considered to be the result of photochemical and photophysical interactions between the absorbed photons and tissue and not related to secondary changes in tissue or skin temperature. However, thermal effects have been recently reported in dark pigmented skin when irradiated with single wavelengths of 810 and 904 nm of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) devices even with doses that do not exceed those recommended by the World Association of Laser Therapy (WALT).

The aim of this study was to evaluate the thermal impact during the concurrent use of pulsed red and infrared LEDs and super-pulsed lasers when applied to light, medium, and dark pigmented human skin with doses typically seen in clinical practice. The study evaluated the skin temperature of 42 healthy volunteers (males and females 18 years or older, who presented different pigmentations, stratified according to Von Luschan’s chromatic scale) via the use of a thermographic camera. Active irradiation was performed with using the multi-diode phototherapy cluster containing four 905-nm super-pulsed laser diodes (frequency set to 250 Hz), four 875-nm infrared-emitting diodes, and four 640-nm LEDs (manufactured by Multi Radiance Medical™, Solon, OH, USA). Each of the four doses were tested on each subject: placebo, 0 J (60 s); 10 J (76 s); 30 J (228 s); and 50 J (380 s). Data were collected during the last 5 s of each dose of irradiation and continued for 1 min after the end of each irradiation. No significant skin temperature increases were observed among the different skin color groups (p > 0.05), age groups (p > 0.05), or gender groups (p > 0.05). Our results indicate that the concurrent use of super-pulsed lasers and pulsed red and infrared LEDs can be utilized in patients with all types of skin pigmentation without concern over safety or excessive tissue heating. Additionally, the doses and device utilized in present study have demonstrated positive outcomes in prior clinical trials. Therefore, it can be concluded that the effects seen by the concurrent use of multiple wavelengths and light sources were the result of desirable photobiomodulation effect and not related to thermal influence.
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