Board certified chiropractic orthopedist and certified functional medicine practitioner, Dr. Kyle Pankonin, opened his single-doctor practice in Lamberton, Minnesota in April of 2000. Primarily treating neuromuscular conditions, Red Rock Chiropractic Center quickly grew to a busy practice seeing 150 to 170 patients per week.
Although satisfied with his patient volume, his practice fell short of his financial expectations. He began searching for a modality that would improve patient care while also bringing cash-based income to the practice.
Dr. Pankonin had some experience using a handheld Class 1M therapy laser. Results were modest for acute conditions, but his practice needed a technology with greater versatility and efficiency that offered hands-free treatment.
As he began researching other technologies, a colleague introduced him to the M6 MLS® Therapy Laser offering a fully robotic and completely unattended delivery system.
Since adopting this technology in 2016, MLS Laser Therapy has become a key component of comprehensive care at Red Rock Chiropractic Center, leading to success rates of up to 89%.
MLS Laser Therapy has also helped strengthen the practice’s bottom line. After adding their third M6 Laser in the Spring of 2021, Red Rock Chiropractic Center is expecting to end the year with $164,000 in laser therapy revenues.
What is MLS Laser Therapy?
The Multiwave Locked System® (MLS) is a unique type of Class IV laser technology that utilizes a patented emission system to precisely synchronize simultaneous wavelengths to ease pain, reduce inflammation, and stimulate wound healing with optimal clinical effectiveness.
The M6 MLS Therapy Laser offers a distinctive robotized multi-target function that scans the specified tissue area, providing even distribution of laser energy. The device automatically calculates the necessary energy emission based on set parameters to provide consistent and accurate dosing with predictable outcomes.
Treating Chronic Pain
Dr. Pankonin offers laser treatments for an assortment of acute and chronic conditions. “Just about every condition you can treat as a chiropractor can be paired with MLS Laser Therapy to get even better results,” he explains.
Patients seeking laser therapy meet with Dr. Pankonin for their initial exam. Once he establishes a treatment plan and laser protocol, the patient is passed along to Sally, a certified MLS Laser Therapy technician who handles all treatments.
While applications are broad, RRCC has found niches in chronic neck and back pain, chronic knee pain, and peripheral neuropathy. Through statistical analysis of his patients, Dr. Pankonin has seen success rates of 89%, 82% and 86%, respectively, determined by a 50% or greater reduction in symptoms.
Treatment packages for each of these conditions involve up to 24 visits over a 3 month period. In addition to these recommended treatments, programs commonly include targeted supplementation plans and custom orthotics as a part of Dr. Pankonin’s comprehensive approach.
Chronic Neck and Back Pain
Chronic low back and neck pain are the most common conditions seen at RRCC. Dr. Pankonin recommends MLS Laser Therapy to almost all of these patients along with spinal decompression and adjustments using the Cox technique. In addition to reducing pain and inflammation, the MLS Laser penetrates into the facets and discs to stimulate energy production in the cells and promote healing.
Chronic Knee Pain
After adjustments and a knee traction machine are used to open the joint, MLS Laser Therapy is applied to the front and back of the knee. With a penetration depth of up to five centimeters, laser energy stimulates biological effects deep within the joint, promoting healing and improving the patient’s chance at long-term relief.
Peripheral neuropathy patients receive MLS Laser Therapy targeting the feet, followed by electroanalgesia targeting the feet and lower calves. Together, these treatments stimulate the nerves, block painful sensations, reduce inflammation, promote nerve healing, improve blood flow, and reduce muscle cramping and spasms.
Red Rock Chiropractic Center is the only clinic in its area to offer such comprehensive approaches to these conditions. By differentiating with unique and in-demand approaches, RRCC welcomes patients from throughout Southwest Minnesota.
Dr. Pankonin estimates that 75% of his niche patients live outside of a 30-minute drive from his practice—many driving up to an hour for their visits.
Education-based marketing plays a large role in attracting patients from this wide area. Through platforms such as his website, Facebook, and the local newspaper and radio station, Dr. Pankonin creates content that educates people about their conditions and treatment options.
Dr. Pankonin has found that most patients are unaware of the benefits of laser therapy. Therefore, it is necessary for MLS Laser Therapy to take center stage in his educational marketing content.
He aims to set clear and honest expectations about laser therapy through his marketing. This includes the detail that laser therapy is not covered by insurance. However, this hasn’t deterred patients who are suffering from chronic pain.
“People are hungry for non-drug, non-surgical options,” explains Dr. Pankonin. “Most are willing to look outside of the box.”
As patients become increasingly averse to pharmaceutical painkillers, injections, and invasive procedures, many are considering alternative treatment options and are willing to pay out-of-pocket for superior, long-lasting results.