NEW RESEARCH SHOWS THAT COLD LASER DRAMATICALLY HELPS PEOPLE WITH SHINGLES-INDUCED NEURALGIA
“Although the rash typically resolves over the course of 4 to 5 weeks, the pain may persist for months, or even years, after the rash has disappeared. Known as PHN (Post-Herpetic Neuralgia), this phenomenon can often be debilitating to the patient.” The July 2013 issue of Practical Pain Management
The standard treatment for severe cases of Shingles has always been anit-viral drugs like Acyclovir. However, what is a person supposed to do when the Shingles themselves are gone, and the Neuralgia remains? Pain pills are a short term option, but everyone knows that these lose their effectiveness over the course of time, not to mention the side effects associated with long term use. Although there are many natural remedies that help certain people with their Post-Herpetic Neuralgia, by far the most promising is Cold Laser Therapy.
In general, patients presenting with PHN usually categorize their pain at a 9 out of 10, which has a large impact on their quality of life and daily activities…. Patients undergoing LLLT [Cold Laser Therapy] normally notice an immediate improvement in pain of approximately 20% to 30% during the administration of the first 3 treatments. During the course of 10 to 15 treatments, patients usually experience 80% to 90% relief of pain and other symptoms. The July 2013 issue of Practical Pain Management
Think for just a moment about why this would be important as far as any healing process is concerned. If you have an abundance of energy in a local area, that energy can be used for repairing or regenerating tissue instead of simply maintaining normal cellular functions. It’s sort of like having some extra money at the end of the month to take care of whatever needs to be taken care of. The really cool thing about using Cold Laser Therapy for pain control is that it is not simply masking pain like medications do, but actually healing the tissue. You feel better because you are really better — not because you took pain meds that only mask the symptoms. The rather amazing thing is that this is not the first study of its kind to look at Cold Laser Therapy for Post-Herpetic Neuralgia. Here are a few of many others.
- The year I graduated from Kansas State University (1988), Dr. Moore and team used Cold Laser Therapy to treat severe PHN patients (all had pain levels of 10 out of 10). On average, they experienced a pain reduction of nearly 75%. When looked at again in 3-6 months, it was found that 80% of these patients still showed the good results from their original treatment with the Cold Laser. One of the conclusions was that, “all patients saw an improvement of at least 40%, which is comparable to the most successful pharmacological treatment, but without the harmful side effects.“
- In 1996, Dr. Moore again used Cold Laser Therapy on 20 different PHN patients that had not responded to at least six months of standard medical treatment. Although there was virtually no change in the control group, the Cold Laser group showed pain that went from an average of 10 to an average of 2.
- Dr. Moore came back later that same year with a paper looking at 300 PHN patients treated over a nine year period. It was determined that patients with PHN of the head had over 60% pain relief, while those with PHN on the torso showed nearly 80% pain relief. This study also showed that Cold Laser Therapy was significantly cheaper than conventional methods for treating Post-Herpetic Neuralgia due to Shingles.
- In 1991, Dr. Iijima treated 18 severe PHN patients. The various ways that pain were measured showed that pain diminished by an average of 55% – 65%.
- Again in 1991, Dr. Otsuka’s team in Japan showed that treating PHN patients with Cold Laser Therapy showed similar pain blocking effects of nerve block injections. The thing to notice in all these studies is that the effects of the Cold Laser tend to be long term. Nerve blocks are short lived.
- Yet again in 1991, Dr. McKibbin treated 39 patients suffering with long term PHN with a Cold Laser. On average, they showed pain at a level of 8.5 prior to treatment, and 3.3 post-treatment. A year later, their average pain had dropped to less than 3.
- A year before the McKibbin Study, Dr. Hong published his own study showing that 60% of those with PHN that he treated with the Cold Laser were completely out of pain in one year. These were long term PHN patients that had failed to respond to conventional methods.
- Let’s go ‘old school’ and get the time machine out for this one. The year I was a freshman in high school (1981), Dr. Hachenberger had good results treating over 40 PHN patients with Cold Laser.
Treatment is noninvasive, has no adverse effects, and no drug interactions. It can be safely administered over metal implants and pacemakers without concern. The use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is discouraged as they can mask symptoms and interfere with the effects of treatment, which works to expedite and resolve the inflammatory process, rather than suppress it. The July 2013 issue of Practical Pain Management