Photobiomodulation / Cold Laser Therapy / LLLT It’s time to name names

This week Lars Hode and Jan Tunér put out a call for some concensus on the name for this cold laser, low level laser, photobiomodulation thing that we do.They concluded by proposing Laser Phototherapy. I had some counter arguments:

1) Whatever is chosen should be available as an official MeSH term (Medical Subject Heading) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_Subject_Headings It might be a mistake to use a term assigned to another other medical procedure For example Phototherapy appears to be the MeSH term for Light therapy when used to treat SAD

2) If we use the word laser in the new term it implies that the effect is unique to laser. Some effects might be, but what do we do about other light sources ? Perhaps we could have a primary term (like “phototherapy”) and put the word laser in front of it when it is a laser study, LED when it is a LED study. Eg LED phototherapy

3) Describes the effect ie biostimulation and bioinhibition The use of light in medicine is getting quite crowded now and several ambiguous terms exist IPL does not imply hair removal PDT does not imply photo activated drug therapies “laser surgery” does what it says – I vote we use a term that describes the clinical or biological action and allows for a prefix of laser, LED, moonbeams or whatever Biomodulation makes most sense to my mind

4) Light to many people implies visible light only and does not allow for IR. Photo or Photon or Photonic would solve this

5) Photobiomodulation is a term much used by American government sponsored research, it is unique to our field of study and could potentially become a MeSH term, it describes the action so less likely to be confused with other light medicines, can be abbreviated to PBM

What do you think ? it’s time to name names

About James Carroll

Founder and CEO at THOR Photomedicine Ltd. About THOR
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