Laser therapy for recurrent aphthous stomatitis: an overview

Clin Oral Investig. 2020 Jan;24(1):37-45. doi: 10.1007/s00784-019-03144-z. Epub 2019 Nov 12.


Objectives: To evaluate therapeutic effects of laser therapy on patients with recurrent aphthous stomatitis assessing evidences from previously published systematic reviews.

Materials and methods: An overview of systematic reviews was conducted based on PRISMA checklist. Search strategies were developed and adapted for six different electronic databases and a gray literature search was also performed. The methodology quality of the included systematic reviews was assessed by the Measurement Tool to Assess the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews 2 (AMSTAR 2).

Results: After a two-step selection, five systematic reviews were included. Methodology quality was considered as a high risk of bias in two systematic reviews, while in the other three were graded as moderate. The systematic reviews' conclusions demonstrated that all included systematics reviews showed positive effects of laser therapy for pain relief, and most of them demonstrated healing improvement. A meta-analysis was not feasible due to heterogeneity in treatments parameters.

Conclusions: Evidence suggested that laser therapy is an effective tool to treat recurrent aphthous stomatitis; nevertheless, more randomized clinical trials should be conducted to compare different lasers parameters.

Clinical relevance: The present overview evaluated recent evidence about laser therapy for recurrent aphthous stomatitis management in order to contribute for evidence-based dentistry and decision-making. This overview suggests that laser therapy is a safe and promising alternative to treat recurrent aphthous stomatitis, since it promotes wound healing and pain relief.

Keywords: Evidence-based medicine; Lasers; Oral medicine; Oral ulcer; Overview; Systematic review.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Laser Therapy*
  • Lasers, Gas*
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Pain
  • Stomatitis, Aphthous*