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Health Watch: Red Light Therapy

stephanie-web Stephanie Stahl
Stephanie Stahl, CBS 3 and The CW Philly 57’s Emmy Award-win...
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Skin improvement at a tanning salon, sound crazy? 3 On Your Side Health Reporter Stephanie Stahl takes a closer look at what’s being called a new light therapy.

The place that promises a golden glow, now has a new red light treatment, that’s supposed to firm and tone skin.

“It’s been amazing,” said Lee Green, who uses the new Red Light Therapy. The 52-year-old says after about 15 sessions her skin looks better.

“The dark spots go away. The wrinkles are much less light, ya know lighter not as heavy,” said Lee.

Hollywood Tans says the red lights have a certain intensity that can penetrate the skin to stimulate cellular rejuvenation.

“It, after time, will take away fine lines, wrinkles, stretch marks, scars. It fades dark spots,” said Valerie Lavigna-Rozzo, Owner of several Philadelphia area Hollywood Tanning salons. She tried the Red Light Therapy herself, and says it reduced wrinkles, faded age spots, and even made her feet smoother.

“It really is a whole head to head to toe treatment,” said Valerie.

And that’s not all. The Red Light Therapy is also supposed to help ease pain, by stimulating blood flow.

“I’ve had people with back pain. I’ve had people with knee pain,” said Valerie.

“If you wake up in the morning and you have some aches and pains or just wore muscles it does take those aches and pains away,” said Lee.

“It’s not something that’s doing what it, they say it’s doing,” said Dr. Anna Headly, an Internist with Cooper University Hospital. She says there is good research on some light treatments being beneficial, but not with the Hollywood Tan Red Light Therapy.

“It’s kind of hilarious that they had the product that actually caused damage, and they’re selling a product that they say will fix that damage,” said Dr. Headly.

Valerie says there are studies. The one she provided on 51 patients in Switzerland was paid for by a manufacturing partner.

Hollywood Tans has a before and after photo as further proof.

Stahl asked Valerie, “So you’re convinced this works?”

Valerie replied, “Absolutely. I have five tanning salons that have these booths in them, and we’ve had success stories in every one of them.”

While the effectiveness of the red light is questionable, there is no evidence that it can be harmful.

Hollywood Tans recommends 15 minute sessions, three times a week, for three months for best results.

It costs 100 dollars, for 20 sessions.

Reported by Stephanie Stahl, CBS 3

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