What to Expect During Laser Treatment for Achilles Tendonitis?

Achilles tendonitis is a common and painful condition that affects the Achilles tendon, the large band of tissue connecting the calf muscles to the heel bone. Traditionally, Achilles tendonitis has been treated with a variety of methods, including rest, physiotherapy, and anti-inflammatory medications. However, recent advancements in medical technology have introduced laser therapy as a promising non-invasive treatment option for this condition. 

Achilles Tendonitis
Achilles Tendinitis with red spot, Injury after exercising and running. Need to see doctor for treatment

Step-by-Step Guide of a Typical Laser Therapy Session

  • Initial Consultation: 

The first step in the laser treatment process is an initial consultation with a healthcare professional, typically a physiotherapist or a sports medicine specialist. 

During this appointment, the healthcare provider will assess your medical history, perform a physical examination of the affected area, and discuss your symptoms and lifestyle factors that may be contributing to the condition. This assessment will help determine if laser therapy is the right course of treatment for you.

  • Setting Expectations: 

Before commencing the laser treatment, your healthcare provider will explain the procedure in detail, including its benefits and potential risks. They will also discuss the number of sessions required, the estimated duration of each session, and the overall treatment timeline. This ensures that you have a clear understanding of what to expect throughout the treatment process.

  • Preparation: 

Once you are ready for the laser treatment, you will be asked to lie down comfortably on an examination table. The healthcare professional may also cleanse the treatment area to ensure there are no contaminants that could interfere with the laser’s efficacy.

  • Laser Application: 

The laser device emits a low-level laser beam, often referred to as cold laser therapy, which penetrates the skin and targets the inflamed Achilles tendon. The energy from the laser is absorbed by the tissues, promoting blood flow and cellular repair, which aids in the healing process.

  • Sensations during Treatment: 

Many patients report feeling a warm, soothing sensation during the laser therapy session. Unlike surgical lasers, cold laser therapy does not produce any significant heat, making it a comfortable and painless experience for most individuals.

  • Treatment Duration: 

The duration of a typical laser therapy session for Achilles tendonitis can vary depending on the severity of the condition and the specific laser device used. On average, a session may last between 5 to 15 minutes.

  • Post-Treatment Care: 

After the laser treatment session, you can usually resume your daily activities with no downtime. However, your healthcare provider may recommend avoiding strenuous activities that could strain the treated area for a short period.

Addressing Concerns and Misconceptions About the Procedure

  • Does Laser Treatment Hurt?

One of the most common misconceptions about laser treatment is that it might cause pain. In reality, cold laser therapy is non-invasive and painless. Patients typically experience a gentle warming sensation, but this should not cause any discomfort during the session.

  • Is Laser Treatment Safe?

Laser therapy for Achilles tendonitis is generally considered safe when performed by trained healthcare professionals. The low-level laser used in the procedure does not damage tissues and has minimal risks associated with it.

  • How Effective is Laser Therapy for Achilles Tendonitis?

While laser therapy has shown promising results for many patients, individual responses to treatment may vary. It is essential to have realistic expectations and understand that laser therapy may not be a one-size-fits-all solution. Your healthcare provider will help determine the most suitable treatment plan based on your specific condition and needs.

Managing Expectations and Understanding the Recovery Process

  • Gradual Improvement: 

It’s important to understand that healing is a gradual process. While some patients may experience significant relief after just a few sessions, others may need several weeks of consistent treatment to notice improvements. Patience and adherence to the treatment plan are crucial for the best outcomes.

  • Combining Treatments: 

In some cases, laser therapy may be used in combination with other treatments, such as physiotherapy or anti-inflammatory medications, to enhance the overall healing process. Your healthcare provider will design a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to your condition.

  • Long-Term Benefits:

Laser therapy not only targets the symptoms of Achilles tendonitis but also aids in the repair and regeneration of damaged tissues. This may lead to long-term benefits, including reduced risk of re-injury and improved overall tendon health.


Laser treatment for Achilles tendonitis, specifically cold laser therapy, offers a promising non-invasive approach to address the pain and inflammation associated with this condition. By understanding what to expect during a typical laser therapy session, addressing concerns and misconceptions, and managing expectations regarding the recovery process, patients can make informed decisions about their treatment options. Always consult with a healthcare professional to determine if laser therapy is the right course of action for your specific case of Achilles tendonitis.