Use of biomaterials and light on bone grafts has been widely reported. This work assessed the influence of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) on bone volume (BV) and bone implant contact (BIC) interface around implants inserted in blocks of bovine or autologous bone grafts (autografts), irradiated or not, in rabbit femurs. Twenty-four adult rabbits were divided in 8 groups: AG: autograft; XG: xenograft; AG/L: autograft + laser; XG/L: xenograft + laser; AG/I: autograft + titanium (Ti) implant; XG/I: xenograft + Ti implant; AG/I/L: autograft + Ti implant + laser; and XG/I/L: xenograft + Ti implant + laser. The animals received the Ti implant after incorporation of the grafts. The laser parameters in the groups AG/L and XG/L were λ=780 nm, 70 mW, CW, 21.5 J/cm2, while in the groups AG/I/L and XG/I/L the following parameters were used: λ=780 nm, 70 mW, 0.5 cm2 (spot), 4 J/cm2 per point (4), 16 J/cm2 per session, 48 h interval × 12 sessions, CW, contact mode. LLLT was repeated every other day during 2 weeks. To avoid systemic effect, only one limb of each rabbit was double grafted. All animals were sacrificed 9 weeks after implantation. Specimens were routinely stained and histomorphometry carried out. Comparison of non-irradiated and irradiated grafts (AG/L versus AG and XG/L versus XG) showed that irradiation increased significantly BV on both grafts (p=0.05, p=0.001). Comparison between irradiated and non-irradiated grafts (AG/I/L versus AG/I and XG/I/L versus XG/I) showed a significant (p=0.02) increase of the BIC in autografts. The same was seen when xenografts were used, without significant difference. The results of this investigation suggest that the use of LLLT is effective for enhancing new bone formation with consequent increase of bone-implant interface in both autologous grafts and xenografts.
bone repair; low-level laser therapy