The effectiveness of low-power laser therapy for fibromyalgia: A systematic review




Poster session 3 Friday: Evidence Tools / Evidence synthesis - creation, publication and updating in the digital age


Friday 15 September 2017 - 12:30 to 14:00


All authors in correct order:

yang S1, Chow L1, Mu P2
1 Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taiwan
2 National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan
Presenting author and contact person

Presenting author:

Shuhua Yang

Contact person:

Abstract text
Background: Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a disease with complicated condition and hard treatment. Research about the use of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) for pain reduction and tissue repair developed for more 30 years. However, these reports don’t confirm the effect this therapy for patient with fibromyalgia or as a potential treatment option. Therefore, this study intends to perform quantitative systematic literature review to confirm laser specific effects and the dosage for patient with fibromyalgia.

Objectives: The objective of this review for fibromyalgia is to confirm the effect of low-level laser therapy in relieving chronic pain.

Methods: The search of the reports on interventions using LLLT for FMS was carried out in the PubMed, Medline, CINAHL, Cochrane, Embase, ProQuest, EBSCO, Google scholar and CEPS. Randomised-controlled clinical trials published over the past years either in English or Chinese. The methodological quality of the studies was assessed using the JBI-MAStARI. The analysis on the study results was done via the review of the content.

Results: We identified 6 randomised controlled trials including a total of 225 patients. Most of the studies used the criteria of the American College of Rheumatology for the clinical diagnosis of FMS. Pain scale and Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) were the most frequently used in evaluating FMS. Their scores reduced significantly in all of the studies, which mean LLLT has effectiveness in the treatment of fibromyalgia. But one study found FIQ scores were picked up again after six months, thus the effect of laser treatment in patients with FMS may be short-term.

Conclusions: LLLT treatments are effective for decreasing pain and increasing function of life in FMS patients. From these reviews, there are still limitations on the effect of the LLLT, and also about the adverse reactions and effective doses of the FMS treatment. Many differences of wavelengths of laser, the energy of density and the duration was found between each article. Further studies are needed to establish the effective dosage, duration and interval of LLT in treating FMS