On-Going Research

New Published Research Reveals the Positive Impact of Adding Photobiomodulation to Treatment Protocols for Dogs with Degenerative Myelopathy

  • September 17 2023
  • Companion

New Castle, DE – May 6, 2020 - A recent retrospective review study looking at the impact that adding photobiomodulation (laser therapy) to rehabilitation therapy had on the outcomes in two groups of dogs with presumptive Degenerative Myelopathy has been published in the most recent issue of the peer-reviewed journal Photobiomodulation, Photomedicine, and Laser Surgery.

The researchers examined data taken from the records of dogs which had received intensive rehabilitation therapy and one of two laser therapy protocols treated over a nine-year period at a single referral facility. Information on disease progression and survival was analyzed to determine differences in outcomes between the two treated groups and historical data expectations. There were statistically significant differences found in the mean times between symptom onset and both non-ambulation and euthanasia of dogs in one treatment group compared to both the other treatment group and historical published expectations. Though further studies are warranted, the data reviewed show significantly slower disease progression and longer survival times for dogs treated with a combination of physical rehabilitation therapy and photobiomodulation using 14-21 J/cm2 of 980nm laser light administered to the thoracic and lumbar spine at 6-12W power.


Authors Dr. Lisa Miller and Dr. Deb Torraca state that the results are promising and give hope for potential treatment for a disease that has long frustrated veterinarians, rehabilitation therapists and pet owners alike. “Given the lack of other effective treatments for dogs with Degenerative Myelopathy, and the safety of the regimen outlined in this study, we are excited to share this published information with our colleagues as an option for treatment consideration for DM patients,” shares author Lisa Miller.


Deb Torraca, who has continued to treat these types of patients at her New England physical rehabilitation facility for animals commented, “Degenerative myelopathy cases have always been a heart breaker, and I am so excited to share the prospect of improving their quality of life for the longest time possible. Our protocol has extended the life AND quality of life for dogs with DM.”

Read the full study here.


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Companion Animal Health is US-based animal health company committed to improving the quality of life for animals through innovative healthcare solutions, designed to provide superior outcomes at every stage of care. Companion works closely with veterinary professionals to identify industry needs and develop products with a demonstrated and evidence-backed ability to fulfill those needs. Offering on-going educational opportunities and industry-leading customer care, Companion partners with its customers to deliver both the products and support required to provide the best care possible at every step in the animal healthcare journey.