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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 697096, 5 pages
Research Article

Technical Parameters for Laser Acupuncture to Elicit Peripheral and Central Effects: State-of-the-Art and Short Guidelines Based on Results from the Medical University of Graz, the German Academy of Acupuncture, and the Scientific Literature

1The Stronach Research Unit for Complementary and Integrative Laser Medicine, Research Unit of Biomedical Engineering in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, and TCM Research Center Graz, Medical University of Graz, Auenbruggerplatz 29, 8036 Graz, Austria
2German Academy of Acupuncture, 81679 Munich, Germany

Received 8 February 2012; Accepted 13 February 2012

Academic Editor: Xinyan Gao

Copyright © 2012 Gerhard Litscher and Gerhard Opitz. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The scientific literature in the area of laser acupuncture is rather large; however, the actual mechanisms and effects have not yet been proven in detail. Since the early days of laser acupuncture, there are still many open questions concerning technical parameters of this innovative technique. In this paper, we report about the most important technical parameters (wavelength, output power, power density, energy density, dose range, and continuous or pulsed laser) for laser acupuncture and present quantitative results for optimal laser stimulation, which allow eliciting reproducible effects in the periphery and in the brain. There are several position statements on laser acupuncture and also several review articles in scientific literature concerning clinical effectiveness of laser acupuncture. For example, the Australian Medical Acupuncture College stated recently that “the optimal energy density for laser acupuncture and biostimulation, based on current clinical experience, is 4 J/cm2”. However, our results of previous research studies and of this paper clearly show that dose must be adjusted according to the individual responses.