LLLT as an effective treatment procedure for Diabetic Polyneuropathy – Case Study

Study: “Low-level Laser Therapy in the Management of Diabetic Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy”

Study by: Prathap Suganthirababu, Sai Sowjanya B.V., Lavanya Prathap, Kumaresan A, Chiranjeevi Jannu, Vahini devi Chandupatla

Abstract:

Introduction: Diabetes Mellitus is one of the most common progressive and disabling diseases. Population affected with Diabetes may experience numbness or insensitivity to pain and temperature, a tingling, burning or prickling sensation, sharp pains or cramps, extreme sensitivity to even a light touch, loss of balance and coordination. Low-Level laser therapy (LLLT) has been advocated for the treatment of chronic pain disorders. With this evidence Laser has been advocated in this study. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of Low-Level Laser Therapy for relieving the symptoms of Diabetic Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy.

Materials and Methods: The study was conducted in the Physiotherapy Out Patient Department of a private medical college teaching Hospital at Chennai. The study was approved by the Institutional Human Ethical Committee of the University. The participants were selected randomly and assigned to the groups based on a block randomization procedure. The materials required for conducting the study includes Tuning Fork, Reflex Hammer, 10gm Semmes Weinstein monofilaments, Goggles, and a LASER therapy unit. ll participants were explained about the procedure and informed consent was obtained. The outcome measures used were Toronto clinical neuropathy score to measure the degree of neuropathy [6, 7] and Numerical Pain Rating Scale (NPRS) to measure pain [13].

Discussion: The study results showed significant improvement with LLLT with 4 joules of irradiation, no significant adverse effects were reported in any of the groups. Therefore, LLLT could be offered safely to patients with diabetic neuropathy. Despite various pharmacological treatment approaches to manage the symptoms associated with diabetic neuropathy is available, the safety of long-term advocacy of drugs without side effects is arguable. Moreover, physical measures of treatment for this condition has a dearth in literature support and there is a lacuna in physiotherapy intervention for managing diabetic neuropathy. Morshedi et al. demonstrated that the low-level laser therapy is an effective mean of treatment for pain and inflammation to a target tissue without any adverse effects if the criteria of therapeutic parameters are followed appropriately [21]. Similarly our study also did not show any adverse reactions to laser therapy.

Conclusion: Results of the present study recommend Low-Level Laser Therapy as an effective treatment procedure for Diabetic sensorimotor Polyneuropathy in reducing Pain and relieving symptoms.

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