How Does Class 4 Laser Therapy Work?

How Does Class 4 Laser Therapy Work?

Chiropractic Towson MD Laser

Class 4 laser therapy may look and sound like something out of an episode of Star Trek but it’s a powerful treatment we use in our office every day. Class 4 laser therapy has become a standard of care for many musculoskeletal injuries since the FDA cleared it for use in 2003. Class 4 laser therapy is a powerful treatment that we use regularly in our office. We usually use class 4 laser therapy in conjunction with other treatments to get better & faster results for our patients.

In the article below, we treat David’s hand and thumb with the class 4 laser. David does a lot of construction diving for his job so his dexterity is important. We’ve been dry needling his hands and thumb area as well as using the class 4 laser. This is only David’s fourth treatment and he has already seen dramatic improvements.

Class 4 laser therapy is a musculoskeletal treatment using a specific type of laser. There are different classes of lasers such as the class 3 laser which is a cold laser whereas the Class 4 laser produces heat. We initially decided to purchase a class 4 laser in particular because we needed it for our work as the team chiropractor for the Baltimore Orioles. We’re now able to offer this specialized treatment to all of our patients so they can take advantage of the wide variety of class 4 laser therapy benefits.

Like dry needling, class 4 laser therapy may sound like it could be painful but actually, it creates a soothing warm sensation. Class 4 laser therapy is a very safe procedure but because our eyes are very sensitive to photons, everyone in the room during laser therapy wears protective safety glasses. This treatment is extremely safe, effective, free of side effects, and, as you can see in David’s case, works very quickly.

How Does Class 4 Laser Therapy Work?

A class 4 laser emits a wavelength of photons that painlessly transfers energy to the nerve, muscle, ligament, and tendon tissue of the area we’re treating. Class 4 laser therapy works by stimulating the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) which drives many of the processes within our cells. This increased production of ATP helps speed up the healing process within cells.

ATP carries oxygen, blood, and nutrients to the area treated with the laser which speeds up recovery and pain relief. As a result of increased ATP production, the patient experiences reduced pain and swelling and an increased range of motion. The heat from the laser is soothing and relaxing as well.

Class 4 laser therapy benefits patients with a range of ailments and can be done in a very short amount of time. Most sessions range from 2-6 minutes so we’re able to treat multiple areas of the body in a single session. This improves patient results and helps them feel better faster. Many patients notice improvement after their first session. After a class 4 laser therapy treatment, patients report a decrease in tenderness, inflammation, and pain.

Class 4 laser therapy is especially helpful in cases like David’s where we’re treating an area that isn’t easy to target with adjustment techniques. Hands and thumbs can be tricky to treat but the small size of the class 4 laser allows us to pinpoint the area and treat it quickly and efficiently. 

Class 4 laser therapy is a drug-free, surgery-free technique for reducing pain and swelling and improving a patient’s range of motion. We can use it to treat both acute and chronic conditions without any side effects.

This is important because many patients have been told by doctors that surgery is needed to repair or replace their joints. While there are certainly many times when surgery is appropriate and needs to be performed, there are times when other effective and less invasive options like class 4 laser therapy can be used instead. 

Most people, including many doctors, aren’t aware of class 4 laser therapy as a treatment option and that’s why they don’t recommend it before doing something as drastic as surgery. The speed, effectiveness, and pleasant sensation of the laser are unmatched by any other treatment. We love it when our patients tell us they already feel better after just one treatment.

What Can Class 4 Therapy Treat?

We regularly use class 4 laser therapy to treat a range of ailments including:

  • Hand and finger joint pain
  • Disc problems like a herniated disc or pinched nerve
  • Tendinitis
  • Repetitive motion injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome and tennis elbow
  • Knee pain
  • Ankle pain
  • Shoulder pain
  • Elbow pain
  • Wrist pain
  • Leg pain
  • Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis pain
  • Sports injuries
  • Fibromyalgia pain
  • Plantar fasciitis

Whether you’re dealing with chronic pain or a new injury, class 4 therapy can be a fantastic option to consider. When paired with complementary treatments like dry needling and soft tissue work, class 4 laser therapy helps our patients feel better even faster.

Is class 4 therapy right for you? Click here or call our office today at 410-296-7700 to schedule your appointment so we can create the right treatment plan for you and help you feel better faster.




7:30am - 12:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

7:30am - 12:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

7:30am - 12:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

7:30am - 12:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

7:30am - 12:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm


Kalkstein Chiropractic
200 East Joppa Road #300
Towson, MD 21286
(410) 296-7700