We have provided answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we get about MLS laser therapy, general orthopedic procedures, and orthopedic surgery. If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, you are welcome to call us anytime. Our office number is (248) 669-2000.
MLS Laser Therapy
Laser therapy is a therapeutic treatment that uses light energy (photons) for tissue healing and pain reduction. Until MLS laser therapy, there have been only pulsed light lasers that control swelling and continuous light lasers that control pain, but not both.
This type of laser is a state-of-the-art class IV infrared cold laser.
The area to be treated is carefully outlined and MLS laser therapy is applied in a rhythmic manner. The dual action and precise synchronization of pulsed and continuous laser emissions work at the cellular level and strengthen the therapeutic effect. MLS laser therapy promotes healing and quickly brings cells back to an optimal condition – all in an eight minute session.
Current traditional laser therapy provides partial treatment at best by reducing inflammation or pain, but never both at the same time. MLS laser therapy synchronizes the dual action of both continuous and pulsed light therapy to reduce pain and swelling and speed healing and recovery.
No. During your treatment session, the therapist may switch from the large laser to the handheld laser. The handheld laser allows the therapist to treat a smaller area. The strength of the laser is the same.
The length of each treatment and the number of treatments needed vary by patient and condition. Each treatment averages eight minutes.
- Most acute conditions less than three months in duration are treated with one phase of six short treatments.
- Most chronic conditions greater than three months in duration can be successfully controlled with one phase of 10 short treatments, followed by an occasional maintenance treatment.
A person can have additional laser treatments within 3-6 months after the initial treatment series.
More than 90% of our patients have experienced significant improvement of their symptoms in as little as one to two treatments.
Studies have shown this laser stimulates the bone healing process. Our experience shows that laser treatment appears to speed up the healing process and can decrease the recovery time by 1/2 or more.
For a very small percentage of patients, the laser treatments may provide only temporary or limited relief. Just as with all treatments for pain and injury, it is not possible to predict who will achieve full relief.
There are no known side effects. While a few patients have stated they feel a comfortable warm sensation in the area being treated, patients usually don’t feel the laser. There is no pain, heat, redness, or swelling during or after treatment.
No. Protective eyewear is worn by the patient and therapist operating the laser, as well as anyone else in the treatment room.
MLS laser therapy is not covered by insurance. However, if you are being treated as part of a workers' compensation claim, your MLS laser therapy treatments may be covered.
MLS laser therapy may be covered by health care flexible spending accounts (FSA). If you participate in an FSA, please contact your human resource department or FSA provider to inquire how to be reimbursed.
X-rays are a type of radiation, and when they pass through the body, dense objects such as bone block the radiation and appear white on the X-ray film, while less dense tissues appear gray and are difficult to see. X-rays are typically used to diagnose and assess bone degeneration or disease, fractures and dislocations, infections, or tumors.
Organs and tissues within the body contain magnetic properties. MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging, combines a powerful magnet with radio waves (instead of X-rays) and a computer to manipulate these magnetic elements and create highly detailed images of structures in the body. Images are viewed as cross sections or “slices” of the body part being scanned. There is no radiation involved as with X-rays. MRI scans are frequently used to diagnose bone and joint problems.
A computed tomography (CT) scan (also known as CAT scan) is similar to an MRI in the detail and quality of image it produces, yet the CT scan is actually a sophisticated, powerful X-ray that takes 360-degree pictures of internal organs, the spine, and vertebrae. By combining X-rays and a computer, a CT scan, like an MRI, produces cross-sectional views of the body part being scanned.
In many cases, a contrast dye is injected into the blood to make the structures more visible. CT scans show the bones of the spine much better than MRI, so they are more useful in diagnosing conditions affecting the vertebrae and other bones of the spine.
Ice should be used in the acute stage of an injury (within the first 24-48 hours), or whenever there is swelling. Ice helps to reduce inflammation by decreasing blood flow to the area in which cold is applied. Heat increases blood flow and may promote pain relief after swelling subsides. Heat may also be used to warm up muscles prior to exercise or physical therapy.
Physical therapy is the treatment of musculoskeletal and neurological injuries to promote a return to functional and independent living. Physical therapy incorporates both exercise and functional training. Exercise restores motion and strength while functional training facilitates a return to daily activities, work, or sport.
A tendon is a band of tissue that connects muscle to bone. A ligament is an elastic band of tissue that connects bone to bone and provides stability to the joint. Cartilage is a soft, gel-like padding on the ends of bones where they come together that protects joints and facilitates movement.
Cortisone is a steroid that is produced naturally in the body. Synthetically-produced cortisone can also be injected into soft tissues and joints to help decrease inflammation. While cortisone is not a pain reliever, pain may diminish as a result of reduced inflammation. In orthopedics, cortisone injections are commonly used as a treatment for chronic conditions such as bursitis, tendinitis, and arthritis.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are non-prescription, over-the-counter pain relievers such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen sodium. They are popular treatments for muscular aches and pains, as well as arthritis.
NSAIDs not only relieve pain, but also help to decrease inflammation, prevent blood clots, and reduce fevers. They work by blocking the actions of the cyclooxygenase (COX) enzyme. There are two forms of the COX enzyme. COX-2 is produced when joints are injured or inflamed, which NSAIDS counteract. COX-1 protects the stomach lining from acids and digestive juices and helps the kidneys function properly. This is why side effects of NSAIDs may include nausea, upset stomach, ulcers, or improper kidney function.
An orthopedic surgeon is a medical doctor who has received at least 14 years of education in the diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and prevention of injuries and diseases of the musculoskeletal system (bones and joints, muscles, ligaments, tendons, and cartilage).
Some orthopedic surgeons practice general orthopedics, while others specialize in treating certain body parts such as the foot and ankle, hand and wrist, spine, knee, shoulder, or hip. Some orthopedists may also focus on a specific population such as pediatrics, trauma, or sports medicine.
Arthroscopic surgery is one of the most common orthopedic procedures performed today. Through the use of small instruments and cameras, an orthopedic surgeon can visualize, diagnose, and treat problems within the joints.
One or more small incisions are made around the joint to be viewed. The surgeon inserts an instrument called an arthoscope into the joint. The arthoscope contains a fiber optic light source and small television camera that allows the surgeon to view the joint on a television monitor and diagnose the problem, determine the extent of injury, and make any necessary repairs. Other instruments may be inserted to help view or repair the tissues inside the joint.
Joint replacement surgery is performed to replace an arthritic or damaged joint with a new, artificial joint called a prosthesis. The knee and hip are the most commonly replaced joints, although almost any other joint can also be replaced.
Joints contain cartilage, a rubbery coating that cushions the ends of bones and facilitates movement. Over time, or if the joint has been injured, the cartilage wears away and the bones of the joint start rubbing together. As bones rub together, bone spurs may form and the joint becomes stiff and painful. Most people have joint replacement surgery when they can no longer control the pain with medication and other treatments, and the pain is significantly interfering with their lives.
On average, artificial joints have a lifespan of 10 to 20 years. If you are in your 40s or 50s when you have joint replacement surgery, especially if you are very active, you are likely to need another joint replacement surgery later in life.
Shoulder surgery for rotator cuff problems usually involves one or more of the following procedures: debridement, subacromial decompression, rotator cuff repair.
Debridement clears damaged tissue out of the shoulder joint.
Subacromial decompression involves shaving bone or removing spurs underneath the tip of the shoulder blade (acromion). This creates more room in the space between the end of the shoulder blade and the upper arm bone so that the rotator cuff tendon is not pinched and can glide smoothly.
If the rotator cuff tendon is torn, it is sewn together and reattached to the top of the upper arm bone.
ACL reconstruction is a surgical procedure that repairs a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), one of the four ligaments that help stabilize the knee. The ligament is reconstructed using a tendon that is passed through the inside of the knee joint and secured to the upper leg bone (femur) and one of the two lower leg bones (tibia).
The tendon used for reconstruction is called a graft and can come from different sources. It is usually taken from the patient’s own patella, hamstring, or quadriceps, or it can come from a cadaver. ACL reconstruction is most often performed through arthroscopic surgery.