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Effects of low-level laser therapy on impaired mobility in dogs with naturally occurring osteoarthritis.

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Barale, Loris 
Monticelli, Paolo 


BACKGROUND: Osteoarthritis is common in the aging dog and is associated with chronic pain and impaired mobility. The main objective of this study was to determine whether low-level laser therapy (LLLT) would increase physical activity in dogs with osteoarthritis. METHODS: Twenty-three dogs with osteoarthritis were instrumented with an accelerometer 48 h before the first LLLT session (baseline), to record daily activity. Each dog underwent six consecutive weekly laser treatments. The scores of the Canine Brief Pain Inventory and the Liverpool Osteoarthritis in Dogs' were recorded for clinical purposes, as a tool to titrate the analgesic therapy of each individual dog, before LLLT (as baseline) and then weekly for 6 weeks. RESULTS: The number of daily activities increased during week 2 (161,674; SD, 103,666) and remained higher than baseline (93,481; SD, 107,878) until week 6 (179,309; SD, 126,044; p < 0.001). Daily step count increased from week 1 (4472; SD, 3427) compared to baseline (1109; SD, 1061) and remained higher than the baseline until the end of week 6 (8416; SD, 3166; p < 0.001). Average energy expenditure during the study period was 179 [range, 2-536] kcal/day; there were no statistically significant differences in this variable between weeks of treatment. Systemic analgesics therapy was decreased in 50% of the dogs during the study period. CONCLUSIONS: Laser therapy may advance the management of osteoarthritis by increasing the level of activity of dogs, therefore improving their quality of life.



accelerometry, analgesia, dogs, low-level laser therapy, osteoarthritis, Dogs, Animals, Low-Level Light Therapy, Quality of Life, Osteoarthritis, Chronic Pain, Dog Diseases

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Vet Med Sci

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