Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) on sutured wounds of the teat in dairy cattle.
Study design: By using the Latin square design, the effect of LLLT was evaluated by radiography, measurement of microcirculation flow, histopathology, tensiometry, and hydroxyproline analysis.
Animals or sample population: Sixteen teats of four dairy cattle.
Methods: Full thickness wounds were made on the cranial surface of the teats. Teats were distributed into four groups; group A and B wounds were closed with a Gambee pattern, group C and D wounds were closed with three-layers of continuous suture pattern. Group B and D wounds were treated with 3.64 J/cm2 of LLLT using a helium-neon system continuous wave (632.8 nm) output of 8.5 nW.
Results: The teat wall in non-LLLT groups was significantly thicker than in LLLT groups on day 7, 14 and 21. The mean blood flow differences between control and sutured sites in LLLT groups were significantly lower than those in non-LLLT groups. The morphology of the epidermis in LLLT groups more closely resembled the normal epidermis than that of non-LLLT groups. Collagen fibers in LLLT groups were denser, thicker, better arranged and more continuous with existing collagen fibers than those in non-LLLT groups. The mean tensile strength was significantly greater in LLLT groups than in non-LLLT groups.
Conclusion: The LLLT affects various aspects of the healing process, including minimizing inflammation, formation of edema, improvement of skin regeneration and enhancement of collagen synthesis.
Clinical relevance: The LLLT could accelerate healing of sutured wounds of the teat in dairy cattle.