Assessment of the efficacy of laser biostimulation and low-frequency pulsed magnetic field in the treatment of microvascular abnormalities in patients with Raynaud’s phenomenon
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Online publication date: 2012-11-06
Reumatologia 2012;50(5):410-415
Introduction: Raynaud’s phenomenon (RP) is characterized by a great variety of clinical patterns depending on the extent of microvasculature involvement. Nailfold videocapillaroscopy (NVC) represents the best non-invasive method to investigate and monitor the microcirculation disturbances. As a result of limited effects of pharmacological treatment, physical therapy gives a valuable possibility of quality of life improvement in RP patients.
Aim of the study: The aim of the study was to assess the clinical effect of the therapy using laser biostimulation and low-frequency pulsed magnetic field in 48 primary RP patients treated with pentoxifylline (Table I).
Material and methods: Clinical examination and NVC were performed before treatment, after 3 weeks of treatment with pentoxifylline and after 3 weeks of physiotherapy. After 3 weeks of pentoxifylline treatment, all patients were randomly divided into two groups, with 24 persons in each group, who additionally received 3 weeks of physiotherapy. In both groups physiotherapy was performed five days per week. In the first group, laser biostimulation was applied (frequency 1500 Hz, dose 25 J/cm2, 2.5 min duration of one session). Patients from the second group received, after laser biostimulation, low-frequency pulsed magnetic field (frequency 40 Hz, induction 1–5 mT, 10–20 min per session).
Results: After 3 weeks of the therapy with pentoxifylline the differences in number of RP episodes and their intensity did not reach statistical significance. Although after physiotherapy a significant improvement in all patients was found, no significant differences were demonstrated between the group after two types of therapy and patients who received only laser biostimulation. Furthermore, after physiotherapy an improvement of microvascular abnormalities in NVC was observed (Fig. 1–3).
Conclusions: In this study a beneficial clinical effect of laser biostimulation in RP patients treated with pentoxifylline was observed; however, low-frequency pulsed magnetic field had no additional influence on clinical improvement. Moreover, after physiotherapy an improvement of microvascular capillaroscopic abnormalities was observed.
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