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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 81-90

Spasticity is modifiable through phototherapy in patients with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis: A randomized controlled study

1 Department of Medical Applications of Lasers, National Institute of Laser Enhanced Sciences, Cairo University, Egypt
2 Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt
3 Department of Basic Science, Faculty of Physical Therapy, Cairo University, Egypt
4 Department of Clinical Neurophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Shimaa A Essa
Department of Medical Applications of Lasers, National Institute of Laser Enhanced Sciences, Cairo University, Giza, 12613
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1687-4625.195887

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Background Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory and neurodegenerative disease of the central nervous system of unknown reason or definite cure, heavily impacting the patient's mobility and overall quality of life. Purpose Through this study the authors propose safe, alternative phototherapies for the early management of MS. Study design This is a repeated-measures randomized control trial. Materials and methods Twenty-four patients with relapsing remitting MS, of both sexes, aged 25–45 years, completed the study; they were randomly assigned to four groups. Seven patients in the control group (group 1) received monthly intravenous infusion of 1 g solu-medrol therapy for MS; six patients in group 2 received solu-medrol plus low-intensity laser therapy (LILT) at 850 nm; six patients in group 3 received solu-medrol plus broadband ultraviolet B radiation (BB-UVBR) (280–320 nm); five patients in group 4 received solu-medrol and scanner LILT and BB-UVBR. All three groups received a total of 12 sessions over a period of 3 days/week. Expanded disability status scale (EDSS) and H-reflex latency were assessed before treatment, after treatment, and at 3 months’ follow-up. Results There was statistically significant reduction (P = 0.009∗∗) in H-reflex latency but not in H/M ratio (P ≥ 0.05) in the LILT group (group 2), whereas EDSS was significantly reduced (P = 0.011∗) by 1 point in the BB-UVBR group (group 3). These results were maintained 3 months after treatment. Conclusion This study suggests that LILT can efficiently reduce spasticity in the short term in patients with relapsing remitting MS. While BB-UVBR therapy alone is more efficient in ameliorating the disability status (EDSS), and combining LILT with UVBR, surprisingly, might have an undermining effect.

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