European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 108, Issue 6, pp 1083–1088 | Cite as

Effect of low-level laser therapy (GaAs 904 nm) in skeletal muscle fatigue and biochemical markers of muscle damage in rats

  • Ernesto Cesar Pinto Leal JuniorEmail author
  • Rodrigo Álvaro Brandão Lopes-Martins
  • Patrícia de Almeida
  • Luciano Ramos
  • Vegard V. Iversen
  • Jan Magnus Bjordal
Original Article


We wanted to test if pre-exercise muscle irradiation with 904 nm laser affects the development of fatigue, blood lactate levels and creatine kinase (CK) activity in a rat model with tetanic contractions. Thirty male Wistar rats were divided into five groups receiving either one of four different laser doses (0.1, 0.3, 1.0 and 3.0 J) or a no-treatment control group. Laser irradiation was performed immediately before the first contraction for treated groups. Electrical stimulation was used to induce six tetanic tibial anterior muscle contractions with 10 min intervals between them. Contractions were stopped when the muscle force fell to 50% of the peak value for each contraction; blood samples were taken before the first and immediately after the sixth contraction. The relative peak forces for the sixth contraction were significantly better (P < 0.05) in the two laser groups irradiated with highest doses [151.27% (SD ± 18.82) for 1.0 J, 144.84% (SD ± 34.47) for 3.0 J and 82.25% (SD ± 11.69) for the control group]. Similar significant (P < 0.05) increases in mean performed work during the sixth contraction for the 1.0 and 3.0 J groups were also observed. Blood lactate levels were significantly lower (P < 0.05) than the control group in all irradiated groups. All irradiated groups except the 3.0 J group had significantly lower post-exercise CK activity than the control group. We conclude that pre-exercise irradiation with a laser dose of 1.0 J and 904 nm wavelength significantly delays muscle fatigue and decreases post-exercise blood lactate and CK in this rat model.


Low-level laser therapy Skeletal muscle fatigue Skeletal muscle damage Blood lactate 



The authors would like to thanks Rafael Paolo Rossi and Vanessa de Godoi for the technical assistance with the blood samples and biochemical analysis.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ernesto Cesar Pinto Leal Junior
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rodrigo Álvaro Brandão Lopes-Martins
    • 2
  • Patrícia de Almeida
    • 2
  • Luciano Ramos
    • 2
  • Vegard V. Iversen
    • 3
  • Jan Magnus Bjordal
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.Section for Physiotherapy Science, Department of Public Health and Primary Health CareUniversity of Bergen (UiB)BergenNorway
  2. 2.Laboratory of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Department of Pharmacology, Institute of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of São Paulo (USP)São PauloBrazil
  3. 3.Department of Sports and Physical EducationBergen University CollegeBergenNorway
  4. 4.Institute for Physical TherapyBergen University CollegeBergenNorway

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