Document Type : Randomized Clinical Trials (RCT)


School of Medical Sciences, Firoozabad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Firoozabad, Iran


Background: Reducing labor pain is known to be a challenging topic in modern midwifery. To reduce this pain, complementary medicine methods have attracted a great deal of attention. The present study aimed to compare the effect of reflexology of sole with non-aromatic oil (Olive) and aromatic oil (Lavender) on reducing labor pain and anxiety.
Methods: This multi-arm consecutive randomized controlled trial study of reflexology with non-aromatic oil and aromatic oil was carried out in 2020 on 99 primigravid mothers. They were divided into one control and two intervention groups, selected through random allocation. The data related to the mothers’ pain and anxiety were collected via the Pain Visual Scale and Spielberger three times, once before and twice after the intervention at 4-5 and 7-8 cm dilation. This study was registered in the Iranian Registry of Clinical Trials with the code of IRCT20200810048357N1. The demographic characteristics, labor duration, and APGAR score were also recorded. Through the use of the SPSS version 16, parametric and non-parametric statistical tests, including paired and independent t-test, x² and ANCOVA, were utilized for analyzing the data.
Results: In the 99 participants with an average age of 25.98±5.80, there were no significant differences in terms of age (P=0.699), education level (P=0.504), or occupation (P=0.140). Additionally, no significant difference was seen in the duration of labor (P=0.194) and the APGAR score (P=0.066). According to the intergroup analysis of pain results in both stages of 4-5 cm and 7 -8 cm after the intervention, the aromatic oil group had a significant difference in terms of pain reduction with the other two groups (P˂0.001, P=0.007, respectively). Although there was no significant statistical difference in the intergroup analysis, the increase in the rate of anxiety was significant in control group in different stages (P=0.002) while this factor remained fixed in the intervention groups.
Conclusions: The reflexology with aromatic oil was found to be more effective than that with non-aromatic oil. Furthermore, the pain rate at the time of labor reduced in the intervention groups compared to that in the control group.


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