Effect of intraoral low-level laser therapy on quality of life of patients with head and neck cancer undergoing radiotherapy

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Abstract

Background.

Low-level laser therapy has been used to reduce complications of head and neck cancer treatment. The aim was to assess the impact of laser in the quality of life (QOL) of patients receiving radiotherapy.

Methods.

Sixty outpatients were randomly assigned into 2 groups. The laser group received applications and the placebo group received sham laser. QOL was assessed using the University of Washington QOL questionnaire. A repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used for comparisons of overall QOL scores and Mann–Whitney test compared changes in domain scores.

Results.

A decrease in QOL scores was observed in both groups and the reduction in the laser group was significantly lower (p < .01). Changes in QOL scores regarding pain, chewing, and saliva domains were evident in the placebo group. Both health-related QOL and overall QOL were rated higher by patients who received laser therapy.

Conclusion.

Laser therapy reduces the impact of radiotherapy on the QOL of patients with head and neck cancer.

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