The 1060 nm Wavelength in Photobiomodulation: A Review

The 1060 nm Wavelength in Photobiomodulation: A Review


Nearly two dozen studies confirm that the 1060nm wavelength may be an effective treatment for various medical conditions.

In the following sections, we will discuss these findings along with the potential for using this wavelength as part of a treatment protocol and to enhance overall well-being.



Photobiomodulation is a term used to describe light therapy. Most commonly, photobiomodulation is used in reference to red light therapy which encompasses the use of visible 630-660nm red wavelengths; invisible near infrared wavelengths (810-850nm) and invisible infrared wavelengths (1060nm).

Clinical trials focused on the 1060nm wavelength have found that the effectiveness of this treatment depends partially on the depth of absorption into the body’s tissues. This requires the use of long wavelengths such as 1060nm as well as devices that generate enough light energy output.

Unlike shorter wavelengths, wavelengths longer than 1000nm are not absorbed into the melanin in the skin, resulting in greater amounts of light energy penetrating deeper into the tissue. 

This opens up the potential of treating joint disorders, brain disorders, and other deep-tissue conditions as deep as 10mm beneath the skin.




We reviewed studies where the 1060nm wavelength was used to treat various medical conditions including wound care, osteoporosis pain, and other musculoskeletal disorders.



Literature Review

All studies treated medical conditions using the 1060nm wavelength, which is one of the therapeutic wavelengths featured on the BIOMAX Series LED light therapy panels.

Knee Osteoarthritis

The greatest number of studies on the effect of the 1060nm wavelength on one condition focus on knee osteoarthritis. Studies show consistent findings of reduced pain, increased joint functionality, and increased range of motion (ROM) after treatment.

One of the most promising benefits of the 1060nm wavelength is an increase in cartilage thickness. A follow-up assessment revealed sustained pain reduction as well as detectable knee cartilage increase 6 weeks after stopping treatment.

Wound Healing

1060nm photobiomodulation supports wound healing, particularly in diabetics whose wounds tend to heal slowly. 40 diabetic women with slow caesarean section healing were treated three times per week for six weeks along with standard wound care. The laser group experienced a significant difference in the appearance and size of the C-section wound.

Alzheimer’s Disease 

An in-vitro study on the effects of light therapy on Alzheimer’s Disease found that a synergistic photobiomodulation using 1060nm along with 808nm wavelengths reduced beta-amyloid plaques. Beta-amyloid plaques result in severe inflammation and functionally impaired neurons characteristic of Alzheimer’s. The neuroprotective effect of the two wavelengths shows promise in treating Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.

Brain Health

Transcranial photobiomodulation (tPBM) may be effective at improving cognitive performance in both healthy and cognitively-impaired individuals. 1060-nm tPBM applied to the right prefrontal cortex (PFC) has been shown to improve visual working memory.  

Shoulder and Arm Pain

Lateral epicondylitis, or tennis elbow, has been treated successfully using the 1060nm wavelength. After treatment three times a week for three weeks, patients experienced significant improvements in hand grip strength and pain scores.

Patients with subacromial impingement syndrome experienced less pain, greater range of motion, improved function, and greater muscle strength.

Plantar Fasciitis

After three treatments per week for three weeks, patients with plantar fasciitis reported less heel tenderness, as well as improved function and quality of life.

Nail Fungus

When combined with antifungal creams, the 1060nm wavelength resulted in faster and more comprehensive healing after an average of 3.6 treatments at 2-6 week intervals in patients with onychomycosis.

63% of the light-only group experienced healing after a mean of 5.4 treatments, whereas 86% of the photobiomodulation/antifungal patients experienced healing after a mean of 4.8 treatments.


Summary of Findings  

1060nm photobiomodulation has been shown to effectively reduce pain, improve functional and range of motion scores, and improve quality of life, particularly in patients with osteoarthritis. 

Studies that included pain assessments found that 1060nm photobiomodulation resulted in statistically significant pain reduction in the knees, spinal cord, wound healing, and shoulder/arm pain. Long-term pain reduction was observed among patients in 5 knee arthritis studies in follow-ups up to 6 months later.

Studies focused on increased range of motion and other functional outcomes relating to knee arthritis, low back pain, and shoulder impingement syndrome showed statistically significant improvements resulting in better quality of life after treatment with the 1060nm wavelength.

Studies focused on wound healing showed accelerated healing including pain reduction, knee cartilage thickness increase, and bone mineral density increase after treatment with the 1060nm wavelength.

Studies that focused on brain health showed improvements in cognitive function including working memory, as well as a reduction in beta-amyloid plaques characteristic of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Most notably, studies that included follow-up assessments revealed sustained benefits. Follow-ups ranged from 1-12 months. This suggests that photobiomodulation using the 1060nm wavelength not only provides symptomatic relief, it actually stimulates healing.

Treatment using the 1060nm wavelength for musculoskeletal concerns is safe, effective, well-tolerated and long-lasting. The treatment promises to be valuable for people suffering from knee osteoarthritis pain, shoulder impingement syndrome, low back pain, and slow-healing wounds.


Red Light Therapy Using the BIOMAX Series

If you are interested in the convenient at-home treatment of knee pain and other musculoskeletal disorders, we recommend investing in the best device that offers the most comprehensive treatment, using the most widely studied red, near-infrared, infrared, and blue wavelengths.

The BIOMAX series are the most advanced red light therapy devices on the market today. Compare the different panels, and explore the many uses for red light therapy in the Learning Center.



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