Using Light To Treat Mucositis and Help Wounds Heal
- Friday, 01 February 2008
Arrays of LEDs would generate biostimulatory radiation.
A continuing program of research and development is focusing on the use of controlled illumination by light-emitting diodes (LEDs) to treat mucositis and to accelerate healing of wounds. The basic idea is to illuminate the affected area of a patient with light of an intensity, duration, and wavelength (or combination of wavelengths) chosen to produce a therapeutic effect while generating only a minimal amount
This method of treatment was originally intended for treating the mucositis that is a common complication of chemotherapy and radiation therapy for cancer. It is now also under consideration as a means to accelerate the healing of wounds and possibly also to treat exposure to chemical and radioactive warfare agents.
The present method offers an attractive alternative to hyperbaric-oxygen and laser treatments: It is not necessary to confine the patient to a hyperbaric chamber, treatment times are relatively short, LED arrays can illuminate large areas, and the exposure of the patient to heat generated by an LED array can readily be limited.