Laser therapy may be considered by arthritis patients as a safe Vioxx alternative

Keith Houser, CEO of BioTech Medics announced that the NeuroLase may now be considered by persons with arthritis as a Vioxx alternative. Mr. Houser stated: "In a recent World Association For Laser Therapy ("WALT") Press Release -- Laser Therapy has been proven in Norwegian clinical trials to be an effective substitute for 'Vioxx' in some arthritic cases with no adverse side affects!"

In the Dec 4th issue of the British Medical Journal, a new analysis on the effect of NSAIDs on knee osteoarthritis pain appears. Quoting from the WALT press release:

"Adverse events of long term medication with NSAIDs and particularly coxibs, has recently received much attention in the Vioxx matter. Consequently, Vioxx has been withdrawn and Prexige has been withheld from the market. The whole group of coxibs, are now under special observation by drug agencies in both Europe and the United States.

In contrast to the virtually non-existent side-effects of laser therapy, NSAID side-effects cause an estimated number of 2000 deaths annually in Great Britain alone, because half of the 8.5 million osteoarthritis patients there take these drugs on a regular basis. The recent development is further moving the balance in disfavor of NSAIDs and coxibs, and may well be the end of the era where they served as reference treatment for osteoarthritis.

The current situation may pave the road for other risk-free alternatives such as laser therapy, which has appeared to provide clinically relevant changes in several randomized placebo-controlled trials.

From the findings of a recent Norwegian Health Technology Assessment Report, laser therapy was given potential of becoming at least twice as effective as NSAIDs, if applied with optimal dose and energy (> 2.5 Joule per point for 810-30 nm, and > 0.6 Joules per point for 904 nm, and at least 3 points irradiated). Although the number of laser trials is still smaller than for NSAIDs, the unequivocal scientific findings so far, has earned laser therapy a top spot in levels of evidence and treatment recommendations for knee osteoarthritis issued by the Norwegian Drug Agency.

Laser therapy is becoming one of the standard therapies for knee osteoarthritis pain in Norway."

Mr. Houser stated: "We have been treating arthritic patients in Dallas for over a year with excellent results. Medicare will pay for the physician's office visit (less any deductibles) so the treatment is very cost effective compared to the cost of Vioxx."

"The treatment of arthritis is just one of scores of other treatments BioTech Medics can provide with the NeuroLase Medical Laser at the BioTech Medic Pain Management & Wellness Centers. These latest Norwegian scientific findings prove what we have known: that laser therapy is an effective alternative to some drug therapies for pain management. This great news will add significantly to demand for laser treatments at our growing number of clinics, potentially causing an increase to gross patient revenues. Physicians are welcome to call Charles R. Crane, MD, our Medical Director for additional information, said Mr. Houser."

The World Association for Laser Therapy (WALT) was formed in May 1994 at Barcelona, Spain, when two international organizations, namely, International Laser Therapy Association (ILTA) and International Society for Laser Application In Medicine, unified to pursue the common goals of promoting research, education and clinical application of laser photostimulation world-wide. About three hundred delegates attended the unification congress.

WALT pursues its mission of research, education, and clinical application of laser therapy via workshops, biennial congresses and their scientific journal -- Photomedicine and Laser Surgery.

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