RHEUMATOLOGY INTERNATIONAL, vol.38, no.5, pp.895-904, 2018 (SCI-Expanded)
In mild and moderate cases of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), the conservative approach is suggested. The purpose of this study is to assess and compare the effect of low-power laser versus the combination of low-power laser and kinesiotaping on pain, muscle strength, functionality, and electrophysiologic parameters in the patients with CTS. The study was planned as single-blind, prospective, randomized control. 64 hands diagnosed with CTS were included in the study. The patients were randomly divided into three groups by closed envelope method. Low-power laser therapy was applied to Group 1 (21 hands), kinesiotaping and low-power laser therapy in group 2 (22 hands), sham laser therapy in Group 3 (21 hands). All patients were assessed by visual numeric pain scale (VNS), hand grip strength (HGS), finger pinch strength (FPS), the Boston Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Questionnaire (BCTSQ), before treatment, after treatment (3rd week), and after (12th week) 3 months the treatment with the same physician. Motor and sensory nerve conduction studies were performed with electroneuromyography (ENMG) before the treatment (0th week) and at the end of the 12th week. Comparison of the group 1 with the group 3 showed significantly better improvement in the former in VNS, BCTSQ at 3rd week and 12th week compared to 0th week, and in FPS and HGS at 3rd week. Comparison of the group 2 with the group 3 showed significantly better improvement in the former VNS, BCTSQ, FPS and HGS at 3rd and 12th week compared to 0th week. When Group 1 and Group 2 were compared there was no statistically significant difference in any parameters in the 3rd week, but there was a statistically significant difference in favor of group 2 in FPS and HGS parameters at the 12th week. We have found that the kinesiotaping method applied with low-power laser treatment does not provide any additional benefit to the low-power laser treatment in the short term, however, in the long term, the increase in the HGS and FPS has occurred. In conclusion, low-power laser and kinesiotaping method in the treatment of CTS may be an effective and reliable treatment option in clinical parameters.