Effects of photobiomodulation in salivary glands of chronic kidney disease patients on hemodialysis

Lasers Med Sci. 2021 Aug;36(6):1209-1217. doi: 10.1007/s10103-020-03158-0. Epub 2021 Mar 20.


This randomized placebo-controlled trial evaluates the impact of photobiomodulation (PBMT) on the salivary flow and biochemistry of patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) on hemodialysis. Forty-four patients on hemodialysis self-responded two questionnaires for oral health and salivary gland function perception. The subjects were evaluated for function of salivary glands and randomly allocated to two groups: PBMT group (three irradiations at 808 nm, 100 mW, 142 J/cm2, and 4 J per site); and placebo group. Patients were submitted to non-stimulated and stimulated sialometry and after the treatment at baseline and 14 days. Salivary volume and biochemical of the saliva were analyzed. At baseline, most subjects had self-perception of poor oral health (52.6%) and salivary dysfunction (63.1%). Clinical exam revealed that 47.3% of subjects presented dry mucosa. PBMT promoted increase of the non-stimulated (p = 0.027) and stimulated saliva (p = 0.014) and decrease of urea levels in both non-stimulated (p = 0.0001) and stimulated saliva (p = 0.0001). No alteration was detected in total proteins and calcium analysis. Patients with kidney disease can present alteration in flow, concentrations, and composition of saliva, affecting oral health, but our findings suggest that PBMT is effective to improve hyposalivation and urea levels in saliva of patients with CKD.

Keywords: Chronic kidney disease; Hemodialysis; Hyposalivation; Low level laser; Photobiomodulation; Xerostomia.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Renal Dialysis / adverse effects*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / metabolism
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / physiopathology
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / therapy*
  • Salivary Glands / metabolism
  • Salivary Glands / physiopathology
  • Salivary Glands / radiation effects*