Estimation of the optimal wavelengths for laser-induced wound healing

Rinat Ankri, Rachel Lubart, Haim Taitelbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Background and objectives: According to earlier in vitro low level laser therapy (LLLT) studies, wavelengths in the red and near infrared range, that are absorbed by cytochrome oxidase, stimulate cell growth and hence wound healing. Wavelengths in the blue region that are absorbed by flavins were found to exert a bactericidal effect that is very important for treating infected wounds. However, as far as therapeutic application of light is concerned, penetration into the tissue must be considered. For this purpose we estimated the penetration depth as a function of the relevant wavelengths, using the formulae of the photon migration model for skin tissue. Methods: We use the photon diffusion model, which is an analytical model for describing light transfer in biological tissues. We refer to the most common chromophores in human tissue and evaluate their volume fraction and concentration in skin cells. These empirically estimated mean wavelength-dependent absorption coefficients are then substituted in the theoretical expressions for the optical penetration depth in the tissue. The wavelengths, for which the penetration depth is the highest, are the optimal wavelengths to be used in wound healing treatments. Results: Our model suggests that the optimal wavelengths for therapeutic treatments are in the red region with a local maximum at 730nm. As to the blue region, a local maximum at 480nm was found. Conclusion: Light at 480nm should be used for treating infected wounds followed by 730nm light for enhancing wound closure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)760-764
Number of pages5
JournalLasers in Surgery and Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • light penetration depth
  • photon migration model
  • skin tissue
  • wound healing


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