Efficacy of low-level laser therapy in management of symptomatic oral lichen planus: a systematic review

Lasers Med Sci. 2017 Aug;32(6):1429-1437. doi: 10.1007/s10103-017-2233-7. Epub 2017 May 24.


Oral lichen planus (OLP) is a chronic inflammatory disease of unknown etiology and indefinite cure. This systematic review assessed the efficacy of low-level laser therapy in the treatment of symptomatic OLP. Electronic databases (PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science) were searched from date of inception till and including December 2016, using various combinations of the following keywords: oral lichen planus, laser therapy, low-level laser therapy, and phototherapy. Owing to heterogeneity of data, no statistical analyses were conducted. Initially, 227 publications were identified. After selection, only six studies were included in this systematic review. In these studies, the laser wavelengths, power output, and duration of irradiation ranged between 630-980 nm, 20-300 mW, and 10 s-15 min, respectively. All of the included studies found laser to be effective in management of OLP, without any reported adverse effects. The results of the included studies confirm that low-level laser therapy is effective in management of symptomatic OLP and can be used as an alternative to corticosteroids. However, due to variety of methods and substantial variations in laser parameters among these studies, more randomized clinical trials with large sample sizes are highly warranted.

Keywords: Efficacy; Laser therapy; Management; Oral lichen planus.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lichen Planus, Oral / radiotherapy*
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Treatment Outcome