Short-Term Effects of Whole-Body Photobiomodulation on Pain, Quality of Life and Psychological Factors in a Population Suffering from Fibromyalgia: A Triple-Blinded Randomised Clinical Trial


Background: Fibromyalgia (FM) is a multifunctional chronic musculoskeletal pain condition characterised by sensory hypersensitivity. Photobiomodulation (PBM) has shown a positive impact on relieving pain; however, no studies to our knowledge have analysed a whole-body PBM intervention in subjects with FM. The aims of the study were to compare the effects of whole-body PBM with placebo PBM on pain, functionality and psychological symptoms in patients suffering from FM. Methods: Forty-two subjects were recruited from a private care practice. The design of the study is a randomised, triple-blinded, placebocontrolled clinical trial. Participants received 12 treatment sessions. Pain, quality of life, level of physical activity and psychological factors were assessed at baseline (T0), after session 6 (T1), after treatment (T2) and at 2-week (T3) followup. Results: There were statistically significant differences in pain at 4 weeks (p B 0.001) (T2) and the 2-week follow-up (T3) (p B 0.001). In relation to the quality of life, there were statistically significant improvements after session 6 (p B 0.001) (T1), immediately after treatment (p B 0.001) (T2) and at the 2-week (T3) follow-up (p B 0.001). Kinesiophobia presented significant differences between groups immediately after treatment (p B 0.001) (T2) and at the 2-week (T3) follow-up (p B 0.001), with self-efficacy only showing significant differences between groups 2 weeks after the treatment (p = 0.01) (T2). There were no differences between groups when comparing pain catastrophising at any time. Conclusion: Whole-body PBM resulted in a significant reduction in pain and an improvement in quality of life in those participants suffering from FM after receiving 4 weeks of treatment. Furthermore, psychological factors such as kinesiophobia and self-efficacy were also improved. Thus, a whole-body PBM treatment is presented as a possible new multifactorial treatment with potential benefits for those with FM and more studies are needed to corroborate our findings

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