Reflexology on the Breast Milk Volume of 50 Preterm Infants’ Mothers

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Investigating the Effect of Reflexology on the Breast Milk Volume of Preterm Infants' Mothers



Reflexology is an interventional method which may lead to improved breast milk. Because the mechanism of milk production is complex, detailed research is required on the relationship between lactation and reflexology. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to determine the effect of reflexology on the volume of milk among mothers with premature infants.

Materials and Methods:

This clinical trial was conducted among 50 mothers with premature infants in two groups of 25 patients admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of Alzahra and Shahid Beheshti hospitals of Isfahan, Iran from August 2015 to November 2015. The patients were selected through convenience sampling method and divided into control and reflexology groups through random allocation. In the reflexology group, massage of the sole of the foot and foot was done in six sessions. The control group received regular breastfeeding training. Data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics.


Repeated-measures analysis of variance test indicated that the mean volume of breast milk in reflexology group (F = 44.002, p < 0.001) and control group (F = 43.09, p < 0.001) differed significantly at different times. Independent t-test showed that the mean increase in milk volume from day 1 to day 5 after the intervention compared to before the intervention was significantly higher in the reflexology group compared to the control group 1days after the intervention (t=5.25, p <0.001), 2 days after the intervention (t= 4.81, p <0.001), 3 days after the intervention (t=3.55, p =0.001), 4 days after the intervention (t= 2.98, p =0.004), 5 days after the intervention (t= 2.50, p =0.020).


The results indicate that reflexology is effective on the volume of milk of mothers, and this low-cost and easy procedure can be used along with regular lactation training.

Keywords: Breastfeedingpremature infantreflexology


Mohammadpour A, Valiani M, Sadeghnia A, Talakoub S. Investigating the Effect of Reflexology on the Breast Milk Volume of Preterm Infants’ Mothers. Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2018;23(5):371–375. doi:10.4103/ijnmr.IJNMR_175_16

Actionable Information for Reflexologists

In this section you will find how this research paper enacted reflexology to produce these results. We at Reflexology.Report distilled the Methodology portion of this research paper and we are presenting you with:

  • General methods used
  • Organization and duration of sessions
  • Reflexology points

The purpose of this section is to make this research paper useful to all reflexologists. This is a tool developed by the Center of Reflexology and Research (Κέντρο Ρεφλεξολογίας και Έρευνας) in Greece and supervised volunteers from across the world.

The reflexology intervention was delivered as one session a day for 6 days. The mothers received a simple massage that would start at the calf, then move to the ankle and the sole of the foot and finally the toes. Subsequently, the reflexologist first applied continuous pressure to kidneys, and then, the pressure was applied in a rotational manner.

Next, the pituitary point in the middle of the toe was pressed continuously, and then, the points on the foot between the second, third, and fourth metacarpus were reflected with the clockwise rotational movement of the thumb. In total, reflexology for each foot separately lasted 20 min for a total of 40 min.

Η παρέμβαση ρεφλεξολογίας χορηγήθηκε με τη συχνότητα της μίας συνεδρίας την ημέρα για 6 ημέρες. Οι μητέρες έλαβαν ένα απαλό μασάζ που ξεκινούσε από τη γάμπα, στη συνέχεια είχε σειρά η ποδοκνημική, το πέλμα του ποδιού και τελικά τα δάκτυλα. Κατόπιν ο ρεφλεξολόγος εφάρμοσε  συνεχή πίεση στους νεφρούς και, στη συνέχεια, η πίεση εφαρμόστηκε με περιστροφικό τρόπο. Μετέπειτα, το σημείο της υπόφυσης στη μέση του μεγάλου δακτύλου πιέστηκε παρατεταμένα και, ακολούθως, τα σημεία στο πόδι μεταξύ του δεύτερου, του τρίτου και του τέταρτου μετακαρπίου με την περιστροφική κίνηση του αντίχειρα κατά τη φορά των δεικτών του ρολογιού. Συνολικά, η ρεφλεξολογία για κάθε πόδι χωριστά διήρκεσε 20 λεπτά για ένα σύνολο 40 λεπτών.

Full PDF for the Reflexology Research Paper


Breast Milk Volume of Preterm Infants Mothers
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