Pulsed ND:YAG laser combined with progressive pressure release in the treatment of cervical myofascial pain syndrome: a randomized control trial

M.S. Alayat, K.H. Battecha, A.H. Elsodany, M.I. Ali
The Journal of Physical Therapy Science, 32:422–427, 2020

[Purpose] To investigate the effect of pulsed Nd:YAG laser combined with the progressive pressure release technique (PPRT) and exercises in the treatment of myofascial trigger points (MTrPs) in patients with myofascial pain syndrome (MPS).

[Participants and Methods] A total of 50 patients with MTrPs in the upper trapezius muscle participated in the study. The patients were randomly assigned to two groups and treated with laser plus PPRT (Laser + PPRT group) or placebo laser and exercises (PL + PPRT group). The laser was applied for eight MTrPs with a 50 J/point. PPRT was applied for 30 seconds for each point. Exercises included strengthening and stretching exercises applied three times per week for four weeks. A visual analogue scale (VAS) and pressure pain threshold (PPT) were used to measure pain and pain threshold, respectively. A cervical range of motion device (CROM) was used to measure the cervical range of motion.

[Results] Both treatment groups showed significant improvement in CROM, PPT, and VAS post-treatment with a more significant effect in the Laser + PPRT group compared to the PL + PPRT group.

[Conclusion] PPRT and exercises alone or that in combination with laser therapy were effective in the treatment of active MTrPs in patients with MPS.