Research Article
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Published Online: 1 July 2009

Comparing the Effects of Exercise Program and Low-Level Laser Therapy with Exercise Program and Polarized Polychromatic Non-coherent Light (Bioptron Light) on the Treatment of Lateral Elbow Tendinopathy

Publication: Photomedicine and Laser Surgery
Volume 27, Issue Number 3

Abstract

Background Data: The use of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) and polarized polychromatic non-coherent light as supplements to an exercise program has been recommended for the management of lateral elbow tendinopathy (LET). Objective: To investigate whether an exercise program supplemented with LLLT is more successful than an exercise program supplemented with polarized polychromatic non-coherent light in treating LET. Materials and Methods: Patients with unilateral LET for at least 4 wk were sequentially allocated to receive either an exercise program with LLLT or an exercise program with polarized polychromatic non-coherent light. The exercise program consisted of eccentric and static stretching exercises of wrist extensors. In the LLLT group a 904-nm Ga-As laser was used in continuous mode, and the power density was 130 mW/cm2, and the dose was 0.585 J/point. In the group receiving polarized polychromatic non-coherent light the Bioptron 2 was used to administer the dose perpendicularly to the lateral epicondyle at three points at an operating distance of 5–10 cm for 6 min at each position. The outcome measures were pain and function and were evaluated at baseline, at the end of the treatment (week 4), and 3 mo after the end of treatment (week 16). Results: Fifty patients met the inclusion criteria. At the end of treatment there was a decline in pain and a rise in function in both groups compared with baseline (p < 0.0005 on the paired t-test). There were no significant differences in the reduction of pain and the improvement of function between the groups at the end of treatment and at the 3-mo follow-up (p > 0.0005 on the independent t-test). Conclusions: The results suggest that the combination of an exercise program with LLLT or polarized polychromatic non-coherent light is an adequate treatment for patients with LET. Further research to establish the relative and absolute effectiveness of such a treatment approach is needed.

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Published In

cover image Photomedicine and Laser Surgery
Photomedicine and Laser Surgery
Volume 27Issue Number 3June 2009
Pages: 513 - 520
PubMed: 19473072

History

Published online: 1 July 2009
Published in print: June 2009
Published ahead of print: 27 May 2009

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Dimitrios Stasinopoulos, P.T., M.Sc., Ph.D., PGCRM
Rheumatology and Rehabilitation Centre, Athens, Greece.
School of Health and Human Sciences, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds, U.K.
Department of Physiotherapy, TEI Lamias, Lamia, Greece.
Ioannis Stasinopoulos, M.D.
Rheumatology and Rehabilitation Centre, Athens, Greece.
Manias Pantelis, P.T.
Private Clinic, Ithaki, Greece.
Kalliopi Stasinopoulou, M.D.
Rheumatology and Rehabilitation Centre, Athens, Greece.

Notes

Address reprint requests to:
Dr. Stasinopoulos Dimitrios, P.T., M.S., Ph.D., PGCRM
Rheumatolory and Rehabilitation Centre
Orfanidou 16, Patissia
Athens 11141,
Greece
E-mail: [email protected]

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