LLLT – How Does It Work?

The Science Of Low Level Laser Therapy – How does it work?

How does Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) Work?

08Laser therapy aims to biostimulate the cells in the body. Because of the low power nature of low level lasers, the effects are photochemical (like photosynthesis in plants) and biochemical, not thermal and do not cause heating. There is no damage to living tissue. Three distinct effects are known to occur when using low level laser therapy:

A) Growth factor response within cells and tissue as a result of increased ATP and protein synthesis;
Improved cell proliferation; Change in cell membrane permeability to calcium up-take.

B) Pain relief as a result of increased endorphin release; increased serotonin; suppression of nociceptor

C) Strengthening the immune system response via increasing levels of lymphocyte activity and through
a newly researched mechanism termed photomodulation of blood.


One of the main mechanisms of action occurs in the mitochondria, the cellular power plant inside every cell. The primary effect occurs when light is absorbed in cytochrome c oxidase, a protein within the mitochondria.

When cells get stressed (e.g. due to disease, injury or ageing) the mitochondria produces nitric oxide (NO). This competitively displaces oxygen from cytochrome c oxidase consequently reducing ATP (an essential intracellular cellular energy and extracellular signalling molecule) and causing an over production of reactive
LLLToxygen species (ROS) and leading to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is well known to lead to inflammation and cell death via the gene transcription factor NF-Kb.

Lack of Side Effects

Low  Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) works of the correct wavelength and density, dissociates NO allowing oxygen back in, so ATP is restored and oxidative stress reduced. Once normal mitochondrial function is restored by LLLT then cell metabolism is improved, and the patient gets better more quickly. This improves cell metabolism and reduce inflammation. The effect on normal tissue is not significant.

LLLTLight will only stimulate cell proliferation if the cells are growing poorly at the time of the irradiation. If a cell is fully functional, there is nothing for radiation to stimulate, and no therapeutic benefit will be observed. An analogy is that patients will not show a beneficial effect of vitamin therapy if they already receive an adequate supply of vitamins in their daily diet.

LLLT Video on How it works

South Yarra, Victoria
Suite 8, 200 Toorak Road
(Ground floor from William St)
South Yarra, Vic 3141
Ph: 03 8529 2225
Email us:

Map Location

Train: South Yarra Station, 100m, 1 minute walk
Tram: Route 58, stop  no. 127

Easy off-street free parking:
If driving you will find many free 1P and 2P spots on and around Toorak Rd near the clinic.

Our Mission

We are dedicated to helping our patients with the most technically advanced, proven and affordable medical therapies. Our treatment modalities offer evidence-based, safe, non-invasive and painless solutions to improve health, well-being and quality of life.


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