Effectiveness of low level laser therapy (Lllt) in the treatment of lateral elbow tendinopathy (let): An umbrella review
Mamais, Ioannis A.
Papadopoulos, Konstantinos D.
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Purpose: The aim of this umbrella review is to determine the effectiveness of LLLT in the treatment of LET and to provide recommendations based on this evidence. Methods: A comprehensive and systematic review was undertaken using Medline, EBSCO and EMBASE. Systematic reviews or meta-analysis were included if they compared Laser with at least one of the following: (i) placebo, (ii) no treatment, (iii) another treatment, conservative (physical therapy intervention or medical) or operative of LET. Principal outcomes included the assessment of short and long-term effect on functional status, pain, grip strength (pain-free or maximum) and a global measure (overall improve-ment). Results: Seven papers met the inclusion criteria for the umbrella review, Five papers were of moderate and two of low methodological quality. All reviews reported benefits associated with laser therapy Vs other intervention or placebo, however the significance of the identified benefits differed between studies and reviews. No review reported negative effects of laser therapy or harm to patients. All reviews noted significant variance between included studies with 2 reviews citing statistically significant heterogeneity. It is essential to consider this in the interpretation of these data. Conclusion: This umbrella review found poor results for the effectiveness of LLLT in the management of LET. Therefore, further research with well-designed RCTs is required to provide meaningful evidence on the effectiveness (absolute and relative) of LLLT for the management of LET.