Adhesive capsulitis, commonly known as frozen shoulder, can be an excruciatingly painful condition, limiting one’s mobility and quality of life. A recent randomized clinical trial sought to determine the most effective laser therapy for managing this condition: low-level laser therapy (LLLT) or high-intensity laser therapy (HILT).
The study involved forty patients diagnosed with adhesive capsulitis, randomly assigned to either the LLLT or HILT group. Both groups underwent laser treatment sessions three times a week for three weeks, complemented by 25 minutes of exercise therapy five times a week over the same duration.
In the LLLT group, patients received treatment with a low-level laser emitting an output power of 240 mW. During each session, nine points around the glenohumeral joint were treated for 50 seconds each at an energy density of 3 J/cm², totaling 7.5 minutes of treatment time. On the other hand, the HILT group initially received pulsed wave therapy along the glenohumeral joint for 75 seconds at 8 W and 10 J/cm² for the first three sessions, followed by continuous wave therapy for 30 seconds at 12 W and 120 J/cm² for the subsequent six sessions.
The primary outcome measure of the study was pain reduction assessed using the Visual Analog Scale (VAS), while the secondary outcome measure focused on pain and functional limitations through the Shoulder Pain and Disability Index (SPADI). After three weeks of laser and exercise therapy, both groups experienced significant improvements in both outcome measures. However, the HILT group outperformed the LLLT group, demonstrating superior results.