Laser acupuncture for treating musculoskeletal pain

Laser acupuncture for treating musculoskeletal pain

An exciting review has been released featuring 33 studies designed to evaluate the effects of laser acupuncture on pain and functional outcomes when it is used to treat musculoskeletal disorders. A recent report estimated that 1.7 billion individuals globally are affected by various kinds of musculoskeletal problems, and highlighted the considerable impact of chronic pain and disabilities upon these individuals.

The key findings in the review support the continued use of laser acupuncture for treating musculoskeletal pain. Results from the meta-analysis suggest that the effect of laser acupuncture on pain and functional outcomes tended to be more significant during long-term follow-up periods rather than at the end of intervention. These results indicate that laser acupuncture may be effective in treating musculoskeletal pain and improving function if an adequate dosage is used, and that the effects are long lasting.

A survey conducted in 16 European countries showed that 70% of participants who suffered from musculoskeletal pain sought other forms of treatment apart from medication, such as physical therapy, acupuncture, and massage. Among these acupuncture is one of the most common types of alternative treatments for patients seeking long-term pain management, and is trusted as a relatively safe procedure with minimal side effects.

Apart from the traditional needling method, the use of low-level laser to stimulate acupuncture points is suggested to be a safer technique due to its noninvasive nature and its acceptability to people with needle phobia. More recent evidence goes on to support the physiological effects of laser acupuncture, including anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive effects.

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