Learn About Reflexology

In my blog I will mainly speak about foot reflexology and regularly present a new aspect of this wonderful healing technique  - I hope you enjoy the blog, it's free to learn.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Reflexology and Cancer

Reflexology students are often told in training, do not treat any patients with cancer!
However, there are ongoing studies within hospitals which show the benefit of reflexology on these patients. Obviously, no claim to cure cancer, but a decrease in pain, anxiety, nausea. For a weak person, this relief is certainly well appreciated. So new trainees should be shown how to treat these patients with care. Also, the treatment should be adapted to the stage of the cancer and the state of the patient.

Read on these articles I found on the web and give your comments.

Article published on the NCBI in 2007
Partner-delivered reflexology: effects on cancer pain and anxiety.

Stephenson NL, Swanson M, Dalton J, Keefe FJ, Engelke M.
School of Nursing, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC, USA. stephensonn@mail.ecu.edu

PURPOSE/OBJECTIVES: To compare the effects of partner-delivered foot reflexology and usual care plus attention on patients' perceived pain and anxiety.
DESIGN: The experimental pretest/post-test design included patient-partner dyads randomly assigned to an experimental or control group.
SETTING: Four hospitals in the southeastern United States.
SAMPLE: 42 experimental and 44 control subjects comprised 86 dyads of patients with metastatic cancer and their partners, representing 16 different types of cancer; 23% of patients had lung cancer, followed by breast, colorectal, and head and neck cancer and lymphoma. The subjects had a mean age of 58.3 years, 51% were female, 66% had a high school education or less, and 58% were Caucasian, 40% were African American, and 1% were Filipino.
METHODS: The intervention included a 15- to 30-minute teaching session on foot reflexology to the partner by a certified reflexologist, an optional 15- to 30-minute foot reflexology session for the partner, and a 30-minute, partner-delivered foot reflexology intervention for the patient. The control group received a 30-minute reading session from their partners. MAIN RESEARCH VARIABLES: Pain and anxiety.
FINDINGS: Following the initial partner-delivered foot reflexology, patients experienced a significant decrease in pain intensity and anxiety.
CONCLUSIONS: A nurse reflexologist taught partners how to perform reflexology on patients with metastatic cancer pain in the hospital, resulting in an immediate decrease in pain intensity and anxiety; minimal changes were seen in the control group, who received usual care plus attention.
IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING: Hospitals could have qualified professionals offer reflexology as a complementary therapy and teach interested partners the modality.

Another article related to cancer and reflexology

[The effects of foot reflexology on nausea, vomiting and fatigue of breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy]

[Original article in Korean]

Yang JH.
Department of Nursing, Inje University, Pusan, Korea. jhyang@inje.ac.kr

PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to identify the effects of foot reflexology on nausea, vomiting and fatigue in breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
METHOD: The research was a quasi-experimental study using a non-equivalent pre-post design and was conducted from Jan. 26, to Mar. 20, 2004. The subjects consisted of 34 patients with 18 in the experimental group and 16 in control group. A pretest and 2 posttests were conducted to measure nausea, vomiting and fatigue. For the experimental group, foot reflexology, which was consisted of 4 phases for 40 minutes, was given by a researcher and 4 research assistants. The collected data were analyzed by repeated measures ANOVA using the SPSS WIN 10.0 program.
RESULTS: There was a statistically significant decrease in nausea, and vomiting in the experimental group compared to the control group over two different times. In addition, there was a statistically significant decrease in fatigue in the experimental group compared to the control group over two different times.
CONCLUSION: Foot reflexology was effective on nausea, vomiting and fatigue in breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy in this study. Therefore, foot reflexology can be usefully utilized as a nursing intervention in the field of cancer nursing for breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.

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