Cold laser for carpal tunnel syndrome

Adv Med Sci. 2011;56(2):270-4. doi: 10.2478/v10039-011-0041-z.

Comparison of the long-term effectiveness of physiotherapy programs with low-level laser therapy and pulsed magnetic field in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome.

Dakowicz A, Kuryliszyn-Moskal A, Kosztyła-Hojna B, Moskal D, Latosiewicz R.
Department of Rehabilitation, Medical University of Bialystok, Bialystok, Poland.


The aim of the study was to compare the long term effects of low - level laser therapy (LLLT) and pulsed magnetic field (PMF) in the rehabilitation of patients with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS).

The study included 38 patients with idiopathic CTS, confirmed by electroneurographic (ENG) examination. All patients were randomly assigned to 2 groups: group L (18 patients) treated with LLLT and group M (20 patients) with PMF therapy. Clinical assessment, including day and night pain, the presence of paresthesia, functional tests (Phalen, Tinel, armband tests) and pain severity according to the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) was conducted before treatment, after the first series of 10 sessions, after a two-week break, after the second series of 10 sessions and six months after the last series.

After LLLT a significant reduction of day and night pain was observed at each stage of treatment and 6 months after the last series (p<0.05). However, in group M, a significant reduction of both day and night pain was demonstrated only after the second series (p<0.05). A reduction of the incidence of Phalen's symptoms were noticed in both groups, however, only in group L the improvement was significant (p<0.05). In groups L and M a significant reduction of pain intensity was observed at every stage of treatment (p<0.05).

Although after LLL as well as PMF therapy clinical improvement was observed, the most significant differences were registered after the second series and persisted for up to 6 months in both groups.

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