Efficacy of low level laser therapy and intramuscular electrical stimulation on myofascial pain syndrome

J Back Musculoskelet Rehabil. 2015;28(1):153-8. doi: 10.3233/BMR-140503.


Background: Myofascial pain syndrome (MPS) which is an important cause of musculoskeletal pain has shown a dramatic increase in recent years.

Objectives: We aimed to evaluate the efficacy of intramuscular electrical stimulation therapy (IMS) and low-level-lasertherapy (LLLT) in patients with MPS.

Methods: Patients were randomly divided into three groups. First group were treated with LLLT and stretching exercise. Second group were treated with IMS and stretching exercise. Third group were treated with only stretching exercise. The patients were evaluated through the pain intensity, pain threshold, cervical joint movement range and the neck disability index parameters.

Results: An improvement was found in all parameters for all groups, except for the pain threshold within the control group at the end of the treatment and one month after the treatment. It was found that pain score was significantly lower in Group 1 and 2 at one month after the treatment compared to Group 3. Similarly, it was found that pain threshold score was significantly higher in Group 2 at one month after the treatment compared to Group 3.

Conclusions: In this study we observed that both LLLT and IMS treatments added on to stretching are effective in improving pain parameters in patients with MPS.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy / methods*
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myofascial Pain Syndromes / physiopathology
  • Myofascial Pain Syndromes / therapy*
  • Neck
  • Pain Threshold
  • Range of Motion, Articular / physiology*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult