Advertisement

Immediate pain relief effect of low level laser therapy for sports injuries: Randomized, double-blind placebo clinical trial

      Abstract

      Objectives

      To determine the immediate pain relief effect of low-level laser therapy on sports injuries in athletes and degree of pain relief by the therapy.

      Design

      Double-blind, randomized, comparative clinical study.

      Methods

      Participants were 32 college athletes with motion pain at a defined site. Participants were randomized into two groups in which the tested or placebo laser therapy was administered to determine pain intensity from painful action before and after laser irradiation, using the Modified Numerical Rating Scale. The post-therapeutic Modified Numerical Rating Scale score was subtracted from the pre-therapeutic Modified Numerical Rating Scale score to determine pain intensity difference, and the rate of pain intensity difference to pre-therapeutic Modified Numerical Rating Scale was calculated as pain relief rate.

      Results

      Low-level laser therapy was effective in 75% of the laser group, whereas it was not effective in the placebo group, indicating a significant difference in favor of the laser group (p < 0.001). Pain relief rate was significantly higher in the laser group than in the placebo group (36.94% vs. 8.20%, respectively, p < 0.001), with the difference in pain relief rate being 28.74%.

      Conclusions

      Low-level laser therapy provided an immediate pain relief effect, reducing pain by 28.74%. It was effective for pain relief in 75% of participants.

      Keywords

      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic and Personal
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribe:

      Subscribe to Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect

      References

        • Stasinopoulos D.
        Treatment of spondylolysis with external electrical stimulation in young athletes: a critical literature review.
        Br J Sports Med. 2004; 38: 352-354
        • Petersen W.
        • Rembitzki I.V.
        • Koppenburg A.G.
        • et al.
        Treatment of acute ankle ligament injuries: a systematic review.
        Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 2013; 133: 1129-1141
        • van den Bekerom M.P.
        • Kerkhoffs G.M.
        • McCollum G.A.
        • et al.
        Management of acute lateral ankle ligament injury in the athlete.
        Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 2013; 21: 1390-1395
        • Bjordal J.M.
        • Lopes-Martins R.A.
        • Joensen J.
        • et al.
        A systematic review with procedural assessments and meta-analysis of low level laser therapy in lateral elbow tendinopathy (tennis elbow).
        BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2008; 9: 75
        • Chow R.T.
        • Johnson M.I.
        • Lopes-Martins R.A.
        • et al.
        Efficacy of low-level laser therapy in the management of neck pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised placebo or active-treatment controlled trials.
        Lancet. 2009; 374: 1897-1908
        • Chang W.D.
        • Lee C.L.
        • Lin H.Y.
        • et al.
        A meta-analysis of clinical effects of low-level laser therapy on temporomandibular joint pain.
        J Phys Ther Sci. 2014; 26: 1297-1300
        • Bjordal J.M.
        • Lopes-Martins R.A.
        • Iversen V.V.
        A randomised, placebo controlled trial of low level laser therapy for activated Achilles tendinitis with microdialysis measurement of peritendinous prostaglandin E2 concentrations.
        Br J Sports Med. 2006; 40: 76-80
        • Stergioulas A.
        Low-level laser treatment can reduce edema in second degree ankle sprains.
        J Clin Laser Med Surg. 2004; 22: 125-128
        • Stergioulas A.
        • Stergioula M.
        • Aarskog R.
        • et al.
        Effects of low-level laser therapy and eccentric exercises in the treatment of recreational athletes with chronic achilles tendinopathy.
        Am J Sports Med. 2008; 36: 881-887
        • Malliaropoulos N.
        • Kiritsi O.
        • Tsitas K.
        • et al.
        Low-level laser therapy in meniscal pathology: a double-blinded placebo-controlled trial.
        Lasers Med Sci. 2013; 28: 1183-1188
        • Kanda Y.
        Investigation of the freely available easy-to-use software ‘EZR’ for medical statistics.
        Bone Marrow Transplant. 2013; 48: 452-458
        • Tsuchiya K.
        • Kawatani M.
        • Takeshige C.
        • et al.
        Diode laser irradiation selectively diminishes slow component of axonal volleys to dorsal roots from the saphenous nerve in the rat.
        Neurosci Lett. 1993; 161: 65-68
        • Tsuchiya K.
        • Kawatani M.
        • Takeshige C.
        • et al.
        Laser irradiation abates neuronal responses to nociceptive stimulation of rat-paw skin.
        Brain Res Bull. 1994; 34: 369-374
        • Kasai S.
        • Kono T.
        • Yamamoto Y.
        • et al.
        Effect of low-power laser irradiation on impulse conduction in anesthetized rabbits.
        J Clin Laser Med Surg. 1996; 14: 107-109
        • Hegedus B.
        • Viharos L.
        • Gervain M.
        • et al.
        The effect of low-level laser in knee osteoarthritis: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial.
        Photomed Laser Surg. 2009; 27: 577-584
        • Simunovic-Soskic M.
        • Pezelj-Ribaric S.
        • Brumini G.
        • et al.
        Salivary levels of TNF-alpha and IL-6 in patients with denture stomatitis before and after laser phototherapy.
        Photomed Laser Surg. 2010; 28: 189-193
        • Fung D.T.
        • Ng G.Y.
        • Leung M.C.
        • et al.
        Therapeutic low energy laser improves the mechanical strength of repairing medial collateral ligament.
        Lasers Surg Med. 2002; 31: 91-96
        • Enwemeka C.S.
        • Parker J.C.
        • Dowdy D.S.
        • et al.
        The efficacy of low-power lasers in tissue repair and pain control: a meta-analysis study.
        Photomed Laser Surg. 2004; 22: 323-329
        • Woodruff L.D.
        • Bounkeo J.M.
        • Brannon W.M.
        • et al.
        The efficacy of laser therapy in wound repair: a meta-analysis of the literature.
        Photomed Laser Surg. 2004; 22: 241-247
        • Stergioulas A.
        Effects of low-level laser and plyometric exercises in the treatment of lateral epicondylitis.
        Photomed Laser Surg. 2007; 25: 205-213
        • Winters M.
        • Eskes M.
        • Weir A.
        • et al.
        Treatment of medial tibial stress syndrome: a systematic review.
        Sports Med. 2013; 43: 1315-1333