More than half of Americans live with chronic pain. It's one of the most common reasons for missed work and has fueled a billion dollar prescription drug industry.
But, a Houston doctor is using a non-invasive high tech treatment to get folks back to work faster. As a university professor, Susan Kellogg's chronic pain was interfering with her work.
"I had been trying to find out what was wrong for about a year and a half," Kellogg said.
Medications only slowed her down more.
"Taking pain medication was not really an answer," she explained. "It didn't always help the pain and there were side effects that were really problematic."
Following surgery to repair damaged discs in her neck, Susan's road to recovery is being sped up thanks to Low Level Laser therapy (LLLT).
Dr. Howard Cotler is an orthopedic surgeon who performs the procedure at Laser Health Spa LLC.
"This is a whole new area where we're starting to use laser for treatment of musculoskeletal pain, neck pain, back pain, extremity pain, absolutely fantastic," he said.
Dr. Cotler said the revolutionary treatments reduce inflammation and muscle spasms while accelerating recovery.
He added, "What's interesting about this technology is you get pain relief in one minute. It's unbelievable."
Patients may need between one to 14 treatments, depending on the severity of the condition. This is Susan's fourth treatment.
"Things like the laser intervention are really good because they're very low risk and if it's the right treatment for you, it can really help with the pain a lot, " she said.
"It's no surgery, no injections, no pain," said Dr. Cotler. "It's really unbelievable."
At this time, Low Level Laser Therapy is not covered by insurance for treatment of chronic pain.
Dr. Cotler does offer the first treatment for free after evaluation.
The cost ranges between $50-100 per treatment.