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Foot Ankle Int. 2014 Jun;35(6):566-571. doi: 10.1177/1071100714523275.

Low-Level Laser Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Plantar Fasciitis: A Prospective Study.

Author information

1
1 Saint Alphonsus Coughlin Foot & Ankle Clinic, Boise, ID, USA.
2
2 UNIFESP-Escola Paulista de Medicina, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.
3
3 UT-Erlanger Foot and Ankle Institute, Chattanooga, TN, USA.
4
4 TCO, Kennewick, WA, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Plantar fasciitis affects nearly 1 million people annually in the United States. Traditional nonoperative management is successful in about 90% of patients, usually within 10 months. Chronic plantar fasciitis develops in about 10% of patients and is a difficult clinical problem to treat. A newly emerging technology, low-level laser therapy (LLLT), has demonstrated promising results for the treatment of acute and chronic pain.

METHODS:

Thirty patients were administered LLLT and completed 12 months of follow-up. Patients were treated twice a week for 3 weeks for a total of 6 treatments and were evaluated at baseline, 2 weeks post procedure, and 6 and 12 months post procedure. Patients completed the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) and Foot Function Index (FFI) at study follow-up periods.

RESULTS:

Patients demonstrated a mean improvement in heel pain VAS from 67.8 out of 100 at baseline to 6.9 out of 100 at the 12-month follow-up period. Total FFI score improved from a mean of 106.2 at baseline to 32.3 at 12 months post procedure.

CONCLUSION:

Although further studies are warranted, this study shows that LLLT is a promising treatment of chronic plantar fasciitis.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:

Level IV, case series.

KEYWORDS:

heel pain; laser therapy; plantar fasciitis

PMID:
24510123
DOI:
10.1177/1071100714523275

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