Reflexology on Chemotherapy side effects in Breast Cancer Patients

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The Effect of Reflexology on Chemotherapy-induced Nausea, Vomiting, and Fatigue in Breast Cancer Patients


Objective: Patients receiving chemotherapy struggle with the side effects of this treatment. These side effects obligate the patients to use not only the pharmacological methods but also non-pharmacological relaxing methods. This study was conducted to determine the effect of reflexology on chemotherapy-induced nausea, vomiting, and fatigue in breast cancer patients.

Methods: The study was conducted as a pretest-posttest experimental design. The study was conducted with sixty patients, thirty as the control and thirty as the experimental groups. A sociodemographic form, Rhodes index of nausea, vomiting, and retching (INVR), and Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI) were used to collect the data. Analysis of variance, t-test, percentage calculations, and Chi-square methods were used to evaluate the data. The data obtained were assessed using the “Statistical Package for Social Science 21.0” software.

Results: It was determined that the difference between the total mean scores of INVR in the experimental and control groups was significant on the onset and first and second measurements, and the difference between total mean scores of development and distress between the groups was statistically significant in the third measurement (P < 0.05). The results of the study showed that the BFI mean scores of patients in the experimental group gradually decreased in the first, second, and third measurements (P < 0.05).

Conclusions: The present study proved that reflexology decreased the experience, development, distress of nausea, vomiting, and retching as well as fatigue in the experimental group. Hence, the use of reflexology is recommended for chemotherapy-induced nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.

Keywords: Breast cancer; nausea; nursing; reflexology.


Özdelikara A, Tan M. The Effect of Reflexology on Chemotherapy-induced Nausea, Vomiting, and Fatigue in Breast Cancer Patients. Asia Pac J Oncol Nurs. 2017;4(3):241‐249. doi:10.4103/apjon.apjon_15_17

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.

To provide the slipperiness during reflexology, scentless baby oil was used at room temperature. The practice started on the patient’s right foot. The foot was relaxed by applying primarily effleurage, shaking, rotation, and stretching methods. During the practice, one hand of the researcher supported the foot of the patient and the researcher used the fingers of their other hand, and a caterpillar technique with the thumb was mostly used. Organs of the gastrointestinal and urinary systems were the primary focus on both feet. The practice ended with solar plexus pressure on both feet.

Για να εξασφαλιστεί η ολισθηρότητα κατά τη διάρκεια της ρεφλεξολογίας, χρησιμοποιήθηκε άοσμο λάδι για βρέφη σε θερμοκρασία δωματίου. Η πρακτική ξεκίνησε στο δεξί πόδι του ασθενούς. Το κάτω άκρο χαλάρωσε εφαρμόζοντας κυρίως τεχνικές ανακίνησης, περιστροφής και τεντώματος. Κατά τη διάρκεια της άσκησης, το ένα χέρι του ερευνητή στήριζε το πόδι του δέκτη, ενώ χρησιμοποιούσε τα δάχτυλα του άλλου χεριού του και ως επί το πλείστον την τεχνική της κάμπιας με τον αντίχειρα. Τα όργανα του γαστρεντερικού και του ουροποιητικού συστήματος ήταν η κύρια εστίαση και στα δύο πόδια. Η πρακτική τελείωσε με πίεση του ηλιακού πλέγματος και στα δύο πόδια.

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