Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) for Neck Pain: A Systematic Review and Meta-Regression
Anita R Gross*, 1, Stephanie Dziengo3, Olga Boers3, Charlie H Goldsmith2, Nadine Graham1, Lothar Lilge4, Stephen Burnie3, Roger White5
Identifiers and Pagination:Year: 2013
Issue: Suppl 4
First Page: 396
Last Page: 419
Publisher Id: TOORTHJ-7-396
Article History:Received Date: 10/9/2012
Revision Received Date: 21/10/2012
Acceptance Date: 26/10/2012
Electronic publication date: 20/9/2013
Collection year: 2013
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/) which permits unrestrictive use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
This systematic review update evaluated low level laser therapy (LLLT) for adults with neck pain.
Computerized searches (root up to Feb 2012) included pain, function/disability, quality of life (QoL) and global perceived effect (GPE). GRADE, effect-sizes, heterogeneity and meta-regression were assessed.
Of 17 trials, 10 demonstrated high risk of bias. For chronic neck pain, there was moderate quality evidence (2 trials, 109 participants) supporting LLLT over placebo to improve pain/disability/QoL/GPE up to intermediate-term (IT). For acute radiculopathy, cervical osteoarthritis or acute neck pain, low quality evidence suggested LLLT improves ST pain/function/QoL over a placebo. For chronic myofascial neck pain (5 trials, 188 participants), evidence was conflicting; a meta-regression of heterogeneous trials suggests super-pulsed LLLT increases the chance of a successful pain outcome.
We found diverse evidence using LLLT for neck pain. LLLT may be beneficial for chronic neck pain/function/QoL. Larger long-term dosage trials are needed.