FAQ

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For your convenience, our most common customer questions are answered right here.

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Phototherapy (also known as light therapy, low-level light therapy, LLLT, or cold laser therapy) in general is a type of therapy that utilizes the body’s ability to absorb light and turn it into energy by applying light to the skin.

Although some may use the term to describe different and varying types of light-based therapies, LightMD’s phototherapy does not use potentially harmful wavelengths (e.g. ultraviolet light), concentrated lasers (i.e. surgical lasers), or chemicals/drugs (e.g. those used in photodynamic therapy).

Instead, our therapy employs a highly flexible pad of superluminous diodes (SLDs) that emit “good” light—red and infrared—at specific wavelengths that we are able to program to best suit the therapy needed.

The term phototherapy may also apply to heliotherapy, which is a way to treat seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and other conditions by exposure to artificial light. While our technology also emits light, our device exists as more than a simple light box that may be used in this scenario.

In phototherapy’s most basic form, it is a type of therapy that applies light to the skin. Thousands of studies to date prove that living cells are able to absorb light and convert it into usable energy. When this conversion occurs, it triggers a cascade of cellular activity and dramatically increases metabolism. This increase in normal body functions is what leads to relief in the areas affected (e.g. relief from back pain, muscle pain, arthritis, etc.), thus reducing recovery time.

In a more detailed look, several things happen in the body as a result:
In phototherapy, photons emitted from red and infrared LEDs safely and non-invasively enter treated tissue as non-ionizing light energy. This energy is absorbed by mitochondria, the powerhouse of living cells, and converted directly into the energy-transport molecule adenosine triphosphate or “ATP” used to power cellular metabolism. In turn, the generated ATP drives RNA transcription and protein synthesis stimulating natural repair mechanisms in DNA, cells, tissue, and organs. The benefits of photobiomodulation, i.e. cellular repair during phototherapy, are many, including the spontaneous catalyst synthesis (such as acetylcholine), normalizing intracellular pH, along with encouraging angiogenesis (new arterial growth), neurogenesis (new nerve growth), and phagocytosis (removal of dead cells and scar tissue). Concurrently, the release of nitric oxide (NO) induces vasodilation, improving tissue oxygenation and combatting inflammation.

The combination of the foregoing mechanisms and other parasympathetic effects facilitates pain relief through release of natural analgesics within the body. Light therapy is successfully used in acute pain therapy, chronic pain management, and rheumatology with excellent therapeutic effects in the treatment of shoulder humerus periarthritis, tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome. Able to treat large areas with its broad spectrum, LED based phototherapy outperforms the efficacy of lasers while offering superior photobiological safety. Compared to magnetic therapy or electro-stimulation, photons are uncharged particles, and therefore do not interfere with the body’s natural mechanisms of ionic charge transport and electrical conduction in neurons. As such LED phototherapy represents the most natural, least invasive from of energy-based physical medicine available.

Every injury and every disease has a systematic life cycle. We have begun to understand most of the stages they go through. Now we are able to match those stages with the right treatment, at the right time. The outcome is better, faster results. With this systematic, matching approach, we are able to treat the patient for injury, disease, and overall systemic wellness and strength.

With the LightMD ABPT1004 Phototherapy System™, we are able to match the appropriate wavelength of light that best suits your ailment. Muscles, joints, tissue—all are best affected by different wavelengths, and unlike many other phototherapy devices on the market, we are able to program ours to achieve the best output.

We also know how the sun affects our bodies in a positive way: it generates Vitamin D, gives you energy, fights depression, kills bacteria, strengthens the immune system among other things. Thanks to the sun’s UV rays, it can also give you sunburn, cause skin cancer, damage your eyes, etc. Therefore, our system only uses the full spectrum of “good” light, such as red and infrared, and the benefits associated with them.

 

LightMD’s phototherapy differs from other devices on the market in several ways:

  1. FDA-Approved
    LightMD’s ABLP1004 Phototherapy System™ is FDA-Approved for the following indicated uses: temporary relief of minor muscle and joint pain, temporary relief of arthritis, temporary relief of sprains and strains, temporary relief of muscle spasm, temporary relief of back, neck and shoulder pain, temporary relief of stiffness, relaxation of muscle tissue, and for temporarily increasing local blood circulation where applied. You can rest assured that our devices have gone through extensive safety tests and is backed by sound research.
  2. Full-spectrum Light
    Many of today’s light therapy devices on the market offer light at a single wavelength – a one-size-fits-all approach, which as we know just doesn’t work for everyone. Our highly programmable system that allows us access to the full spectrum of red through infrared light. This is important because different parts of the body – skin, tissue, muscles, etc. – respond best to different wavelengths, as proven by countless research articles. Our device not only comes with these proven wavelengths as presets, but also allows us to manually input a frequency of red or infrared light between 1Hz and 20,000Hz.
  3. Highly Flexible Pads
    Our device comes equipped with LightPads, which use a new type of flexible connector between sets of superluminous diodes (SLDs) creating a grid-like structure inside the hygienic polymeric pad. This grid provides superior flexibility in multiple directions, which allows it to better to contour around the body for greater comfort and coverage.
  4. Denser Area of Light
    The LightPads that are used emit light from hundreds of superluminous diodes per pad, providing a denser, richer area of light.

Although phototherapy is a well-researched and well-documented topic (PubMed.gov has over 121,000 research studies listed about it), only recently has it achieved notable status thanks to today’s technological advances.

Below is a list of possible adverse effects when using the ABPT1004 Phototherapy System:

  • Dehydration from prolonged use
  • Uncomfortably hot or burning sensation
  • Excessive sweating
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Irritation or excessive itching in treatment area
  • Accelerated cataract growth (when cataracts are a pre-existing condition)

In cases of severe pain or trauma, it is important for a registered physician to diagnose and confirm the source or origin of pain before performing phototherapy, as the pain reduction benefit of the treatment may mask a severe condition (e.g. an appendicitis).

General contraindications and precautions for phototherapy include: extreme dehydration; photosensitivity; temperature insensitivity; poor thermal regulation (e.g. from neuroleptics); bleeding disorder; acute inflammation; unknown or undiagnosed trauma; hemorrhage; inability to communicate or respond to pain; decreased sensation; ischemia or blood clot; atrophic skin; cataracts; and medications associated with photosensitivity.

All SLDs used in our phototherapy do not exist as a photobiological hazard to eyes or skin (IEC 62471 Exempt).

For contraindications, please read the FAQ question “Are there any contraindications?”

For more information, please feel free to email us at info@LightMD.com or call Dan Schell at (408) 250.5879.

To set up an appointment, please feel free to call Dan Schell (408) 250.5879 during our office hours or email us at info@LightMD.com.

Business hours are Monday through Friday, 9am—7pm.
Therapy sessions are by appointment only.

As we are based in Cupertino, CA, we largely service the California Bay Area.

If you are outside of our service area, please feel free to contact us to see if there are any LightMD representatives in your area.

We hope to put our phototherapy systems in clinics across the nation and provide non-invasive relief to people everywhere. Contact us and let us know if you know a clinic (or have your own) that would be interested in adding phototherapy to their practice.