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Laser Therapy For Ls Or Spinal Arthritis?


Guest SusanP
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A local vet is opening a new practice, and she is offering class IV Deep tissue laser therapy. We went there for an open house to check the place out, met the vet and a young woman who moved from one of our former vet offices to work part-time with this one. She's had it done on her dog and felt is was very helpful. Apparently it's used in sports medicine for humans....I haven't really heard of this before, but has anyone tried it on their dog for LS or spinal arthritis, and did it help? Does anyone else have more info on it?

 

I'm thinking of trying it for Zippy (14 1/2) and Dr. Doug (12 3/4), who both move more slowly, wear their hind toenails excessively on walks, are having more trouble going up stairs...and Zippy drops poop. The vet thought this could help both of them with comfort, though we have no real way of knowing if they are in pain or not....Just thinking out loud.

 

Opinions, anyone?

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I don't think I expect it will make my old dogs young again, but I'm wondering if anyone has tried this with some improvement in mobility, comfort, function?

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Think you will find mixed reviews--I can tell you that we were going by purchase the unit for our clinic but, after trying it on our own dogs with different ailments we decided it wasn't worth the investment-we really didn't appreciate a significant improvement.

I wasn't implying that you were seeking out a miracle or complete resolution of your hounds aging ailments-just thought perhaps it might not be beneficial in your guys case--however, as I mentioned it sure can't hurt and if it helps a little that would be greyt!

Keep us posted if you decide to try it.

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We have one at my clinic, and as tbhounds has said, it gets mixed reviews. Where we find it really does well is with wound healing.

We use it on acl surgeries for about 3 weeks post-op & recovery time speeds up. We've also used it post-op analsaculectomies and

they do great.

 

With pre-existing conditions; arthritis or LS, it seems to feel really good while it's happening, but not much for lasting effects.

I tried it for Desi's arthritic wrists.....no significant improvement.

Blessed is the person who has earned the love of an old dog.

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Guest MnMDogs

I don't have personal experience, but my cousin is using it on her 12 year old male who likely has LS. She's had about 4-6 treatments On him (I'm not 100 % certain, she's in NJ and the recent storm postponed a visit or 2). She didn't see improvement immediately, but now that he's had a few treatments, she thinks he's doing better, and seems of be less painful

 

He'd been on oral steroids for a short time prior to the laser treatments, and those really helped, but her vet was concerned with side effects. The cost for her is about 160 for 6 treatments, and I think she will continue. I would give it a try.

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I think for this particular condition, you'd see better results with acupuncture, but, laser therapy has been beneficial for us-when Sutra hurt his knees it was amazingly beneficial. I had to carry him in to the office but he walked out on his own!

 

Can't believe Zippy is 14 1/2! :wub:

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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It does sound like it works best for healing injuries. Not sure I'll do it for Doug and Zippy's backs, but I want to try it for a big sore Doug has on his leg. 3 months ago, he tripped going up 3 wooden steps to a cabin and shaved off a big patch of skin on his shin. It's healing very poorly, despite antibiotics, and I'd rather not keep him on the meds. Hoping they can zap his wound!

 

Kristen, Zippy is still amazingly healthy. A bit too thin (always tended to be), wobbly and frail, trouble seeing and hearing, has to be carried up and down stairs, but she still kicks up her heels in the yard now and then and enjoys 1/2 mile walks. But people now call her a "gray dog", not a "black dog"!

 

And Dr. Doug (our first hound!) will be 13 on Feb 9. He is also doing well, can still do everything he needs to without assistance. My big, sweet baby!

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Assuming this is the same thing as cold laser therapy?

 

I used it for a puncture wound Zuri got between his toes a few months back (if you search for his name in H&M the thread may come up) and was really impressed with the speed with which the wound healed. The wound looked like someone had stuck a pencil into the webbing between his toes - it was way up by where the toes meet the foot so a really tough spot to get to. We did three treatments and the wound was completely healed in about 10 days.

 

That was with my regular vet, who is a huge fan of it, and says she and the staff use it on themselves frequently for their aches and pains.

 

Zuri is currently getting the treatments for an issue related to his LS during his PT sessions at our orthopedist. After seeing our ortho a couple of times, he felt that we needed the PT consult because his core strength was poor, which was likely contributing to his LS problems (poor core strength causes more stress on the back, exacerbating the issues). It's actually really easy for me to see now that his core muscle are weak now that the dr has told me. You can see that even though he's at a very good weight, with just the tips of his hipbones showing, his spine sticks out really far where that band of muscles is along the back end of his spine. I was skeptical until I looked at Violet for comparison, who actually is a bit underweight at the moment and you can barely see her spine.

 

Anyway, when we did the PT consult, they found that his groin muscles (iliopsis I think - sp?) were strained and spasming (we already knew his back muscles were - you can see them twitch and jump when you run your fingers along them), especially the left one since he tends to weight bear more on that leg when standing. So they decided we needed to first rehab the groin muscles, then work on core strengthening. So the rehab for the groin is exercises that we do at home, plus weekly sessions where he gets the laser therapy and massage. We have also been using Robaxin. I have seen improvement all around, but I definitely noted improvement after the PT sessions, especially the first one when he was still hurting the most.

 

Sorry to go on for so long, but I wanted to share why it's been helpful for us. I think there are probably a lot of LS dogs out there that have these compensation issues that if addressed, could help them feel better and perhaps improve their overall LS symptoms, but it seems like most dr's if they even diagnose properly just prescribe medication (and often to limit exercise, which only serves to further weaken the muscles).

 

BTW, we'll likely do underwater treadmill for the core strengthening, that should be interesting. :lol

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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I've always wanted to see a dog do the underwater treadmill in person!

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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Well, I took Dr. Doug in for the laser therapy on the slow-healing sore on his leg, and they said why not just try the back too, since the charge the same for up to 3 spots on the same dog. So Doug got both his leg and his back treated, going back for another treatment in 3 days. So Doug will be our guinea pig.

 

Not sure if cold laser therapy is the same as class IV deep tissue laser therapy. Probably, though there is a little warmth generated in the process, so it isn't quite "cold".

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I think Class IV is the newest version of cold laser therapy. We had it done on Spencer's back (he has both LS and problems with three disks.) The first time, when the vet did the treatment, he showed improvement. The second and third times, the techs did it, and he was clearly worse for the experience. I don't know if it was the practitioner that made the difference or if that treatment just isn't right for his condition, but we're not doing it anymore. Hope it does something good for Doug's back, but be aware that it might not. It should be good for the spot on the leg.

Edited by greyhead
Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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  • 4 weeks later...

Sam had a pinched nerve at the end of his spine and was limping and in pain. When I posted here, overwhelmingly the suggestions were Chiropractor or Acupuncture. I was very skeptical and I have NEVER had Chiropractic treatments myself, but the alternative was surgery, and almost everyone recommended against it (even my own orthopedic surgeon). Sam was on three pills, one could cause liver damage) twice a day.

 

I decided to try it. I doubted it would do any good.

 

After 3 treatments of Chiropractic and lazer therapy, Sam is so much better. NO limp, No Pain, and he has started RUNNING up stairs and playing with toys. He has started taking the lead ( we have two) on walks and now we walk over two miles a day. He was taking 3 pills twice a day, he now takes two pills once a day.

 

Try it.

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:confetti That is GREYT news! :yay

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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  • 4 weeks later...

Update on Sam. The Chiro and laser therapy for his LS has done wonders. He no longer takes ANY medication. Is leading MIMI on the walks, climbs (actually runs) the stairs with no problems. He jumps when he gets excited, and has even picked up some toys and played. As a non believer in alternative medicine, I am now convinced.

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Congratulations to both you and Sam!!!!

 

i too was a dis-believer in alternative medicine === and now shout it from the mountain top, to anyone who will listen!

*i actually purchased a cold laser machine - i am a little chicken to start using it - but will be as soon as i read all the instructions etc.

lorinda, mom to the ever revolving door of Foster greyhounds

Always in my heart: Teala (LC Sweet Dream) , Pepton, Darbee-Do (Hey Barb) , Rascal (Abitta Rascal), Power (Beyond the Power), and the miracle boy LAZER (2/21/14), Spirit (Bitter Almonds) 8/14

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I'd love to get a machine myself, but I'd need a recommendation on which one would be best.

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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I'd love to get a machine myself, but I'd need a recommendation on which one would be best.

I would start by asking the Veterinarians in your area what they like best. Which ones are giving them the best results.

 

my DH works in the Laser industry and got this one for us. it is different from all that i've seen out there. I think stronger too.

DH has the knowledge and background to know how to make sure the lasers are emitting the correct dose and not some way out of

wack pulse dose of some kind. He tested and measured our machine before giving it to me to use. and like i said, i'm still a bit

nervous, but will be using it as soon as i understand it a bit more.

lorinda, mom to the ever revolving door of Foster greyhounds

Always in my heart: Teala (LC Sweet Dream) , Pepton, Darbee-Do (Hey Barb) , Rascal (Abitta Rascal), Power (Beyond the Power), and the miracle boy LAZER (2/21/14), Spirit (Bitter Almonds) 8/14

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Guest FullMetalFrank

Our experience with the laser was in regards to wound healing; our vet had fairly recently purchased the unit and was compiling some case studies and gave us a very good rate on the series of treatments for Jewels who had a huge skin tear/laceration over her back. I do believe it hurried up the healing process as well as relieved pain substantially. I'd give it a try for treatment of other injuries, too; I don't think it can do much harm (except maybe to the wallet) and it has been given much praise in human sports medicine.

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