Low level laser therapy for treating tuberculosis.


Not enough evidence to support using low level laser therapy alongside drug treatments for tuberculosis. Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious bacterial infection that can affect different parts of the body; most frequently it affects the lungs (pulmonary TB). Some bacteria can be drug resistant, and some people may have the infection alongside another medical condition. People suffer from severe cough, weakness and sweats, and some people still die from TB even though effective drug treatment has been around for many years. It has been proposed that low level laser therapy may help the drugs to be more effective. There are a number of different devices for giving the laser treatment, some giving the treatment externally (to the body or acupuncture sites), some using internal treatment (for blood or lungs) at varying doses. The review of trials found only one randomized trial where the data were poorly reported, and it did not clarify the potential benefits and harms. Low level laser therapy should only be used in randomized controlled trials until its value is evaluated.

This updates an earlier version of this review.


Vlassov, V. V.; Reze, A. G. Low level laser therapy for treating tuberculosis. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (2010) : [DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD003490.pub2]

Low level laser therapy for treating tuberculosis.

Published 1 January 2010