Background: Pain, a common phenomenon, is an inevitable part of childbirth. A number of pressure points exist that reduce labor pain in the body.
Objectives: This study aims to compare mono- and bi-stage acupressure at the GB-21 point on the severity of labor pain and the delivery outcome.
Patients and Methods: This quasi-experimental uni-blind study enrolled 150 full-term pregnant women who were experiencing labor pains. Patients were randomly divided into three groups: a) mono-stage acupressure applied at 3-4 cm cervical dilatation (n = 50), b) bi-stage acupressure applied at 3-4 cm and 7-8 cm dilatation (n = 50), and c) control group (n = 50). Acupressure intervention at the GB-21 point was carried out for a period of 20 minutes. The pain severity was evaluated before, immediately, and at 30 and 60 minutes after intervention by a visual analog scale.
Results: The pain severity after intervention in the 3-4 cm dilatation mono-stage intervention group was less than the control group (P < 0.001). However there was no difference between the mono- and bi-stage intervention groups (P > 0.05). In the 7-8 cm dilatation group, the pain severity was reduced only in the bi-stage in contrast with mono stage intervention groups (P < 0.001). The duration of the second stage and rate of cesarean section was less in the intervention groups (P < 0.001).
Conclusions: Exerting pressure at the GB-21 point is effective in reducing pain, duration of labor and the rate of cesarean sections. Pain can be reduced in the mother by increasing the Frequency interference of intervention (One vs. two stages). Because this method is both inexpensive and reliable, we recommend its use to the medical team.