LED Therapy to support Nerve Regeneration

The yellow lines in the above skeleton depict the nerve branches of the horse

If you have ever wondered about the nerve branches within the horse, there are two major plexus groups. The brachio plexus, managing the shoulder, neck & front hooves and the lumbosacral plexus, managing the lumbar, quarters & hind hooves. On dissection, these nerve bundles look like simple fatty tissues, and it is hard to believe they control so much. When they become compromised, either through injury or restriction, they can either "misfire", tingle or go numb - unlike humans however, our horses can't verbalise these feelings.

Over a prolonged period of restriction, the body can begin to ignore signals to the muscles surrounding these areas, which may sometimes cause atrophy or depending on the rest of the body movement pattern, hypertrophy (over development) of the surrounding muscles. Whilst some therapists are trained in nerve release techniques (like Samantha is!) healthy nerve function has been shown to improve through the use of LED therapy.

'Chamber fluid' is produced by nerve stumps after nerve injury. For 1 (one) hour per day, subjects were treated with LED Therapy which was proven to support larger volumes of chamber fluid up to 7 days post injury, in comparison to the control group whose levels subsided at day 3 post injury. LED irradiation improved nerve regeneration and increased antioxidation levels in the chamber fluid for a longer period of time, resulting in faster healing rate of the injured nerve.

Effect of near-infrared light-emitting diodes on nerve regeneration - PubMed (nih.gov)

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