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Laser Acupuncture Analgesia on Postpartum Low Back Pain: A Prospective Randomized Controlled Study

  • Hsuesh-Yu Cheng
    Affiliations
    Department of Nursing, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

    School of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
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  • Bei-Yu Wu
    Affiliations
    Department of Chinese Medicine, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

    Graduate Institute of Integrated Medicine, College of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan

    Fooyin University College of Nursing, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
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  • Tao-Hsin Tung
    Affiliations
    Department of Medical Research and Education, Cheng-Hsin General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan
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  • Carol Shieh
    Affiliations
    Department of Community and Health Systems & Department of Science of Nursing Care, Indiana University School of Nursing, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Chun-Ting Liu
    Correspondence
    Address correspondence to Chun-Ting Liu, Department of Chinese Medicine, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, No. 123, Dapi Rd., Niaosong Dist., Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan.
    Affiliations
    Department of Chinese Medicine, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

    Graduate Institute of Integrated Medicine, College of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan
    Search for articles by this author
Published:September 01, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pmn.2022.07.007

      Highlights

      • Laser acupuncture is a safe, non-invasive, and painless nonpharmacologic technique.
      • Laser acupuncture improves the postpartum low back pain.
      • Laser acupuncture diminishes the limitations of daily activity and physical activity, and perceived stress in women with postpartum low back pain.
      • Laser acupuncture could be used as an alternative therapy for postpartum low back pain in the postpartum care setting.

      Abstract

      Background

      Unresolved postpartum LBP may affect women’s physical and psychological health.

      Aim

      To investigate the analgesic effects of laser acupuncture therapy (LAT) for postpartum LBP.

      Method

      Postpartum women with LBP were recruited and randomly assigned to the intervention group or the control group from November 2017 to July 2018. The participants in the intervention group received LAT and standard care. The participants in the control group received only standard care. The primary outcome was the Visual Analogue Scale for LBP. Secondary outcomes were limitation of daily activities and physical activity; perceived stress scale; and salivary cortisol values.

      Results

      In all, 106 participants were recruited and assigned to the intervention group or the control group. As compared with the control group, the participants in the LAT group had significantly lower intensity of LBP (mean ± SD: 1.21 ± 0.99 vs 3.25 ± 1.14; p < .001), limitations of daily activities (mean ± SD: 3.17 ± 2.09 vs 10.40 ± 4.72; p < .001) and physical activity (mean ± SD: 3.04 ± 2.17 vs 9.79 ± 4.71; p < .001), perceived stress (mean ± SD: 26.13 ± 3.97 vs 28.85 ± 4.26; p = .001), and salivary cortisol levels (mean ± SD: 0.194 ± 0.131 vs 0.280 ± 0.234; p = .02) post-intervention.

      Conclusions

      For postpartum LBP, LAT combined with standard care had greater analgesic efficacy, lower perceived stress, lower limitations of daily activities and physical activity, and lower salivary cortisol levels than standard care alone.
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