Reflexology on pain/outcomes of labor | 88 primiparous women

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Reviewing the effect of reflexology on the pain and certain features and outcomes of the labor on the primiparous women


Background: Reflexology is one of the non-pharmacological pain relief methods, and since it is a non-invasive, inexpensive and applicable technique, it can be used by a skilled and trained midwife. This study aimed to review the effect of reflexology on the pain and outcomes of the labor.

Methods: In this quasi-experimental study, 88 primiparous mothers referred to selected hospitals of Isfahan for vaginal delivery were selected using simple random sampling method and then randomized in two groups. Data collection tools were the demographic data questionnaire, profile and outcomes of the labor and the short-form of the McGill Questionnaire for Pain Rating Index (PRI) assessment. The intervention was general and specific reflexology in the active phase of labor. PRI was assessed before the intervention and four times after the intervention (3-5 cm, 6-8 cm and 9-10 cm dilatations and second stage of labor.

Results: There was no significant difference between groups before intervention. In the reflexology group, there was a significant difference between the PRI before and after the 4 stages intervention (p < 0.001). PRI was different significantly between studied groups after intervention (p < 0.001). The length of active phase of labor was different significantly between the two groups; but this difference was not significant during the second (p = 0.29), and the third (p = 0.27) stages. The difference between the 1(st) minute and the 5(th) minute Apgar score (p < 0.001) and rate of hemorrhage between the two groups were different significantly (p = 0.02).

Conclusions: Reflexology can lead to decrease in the labor pain. Therefore, regarding to the safety of this technique, it can be replaced as an alternative for pharmacological methods.

Keywords: Reflexology; labor pain; primiparous.


Valiani M, Shiran E, Kianpour M, Hasanpour M. Reviewing the effect of reflexology on the pain and certain features and outcomes of the labor on the primiparous women. Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2010;15(Suppl 1):302‐310.

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.

Reflexology was applied for 30 minutes on each foot (60 minutes in total) as general reflexology including 15 stages; 1. Solar plexus, 2 & 3, Areas related to the digestive viscera, 4. Pelvic area, 5. Pituitary, 6. Sinuses, 7. upper and lower extremities (external sides of the feet), 8. Spinal cord (inner sides of the feet), 9. Lungs, 10. Shallow chest area, 11 & 12. The sides on the feet, 13. Ovaries, 14. Uterus and 15. fallopian tubes; and the specific reflexology including the areas related to labor pain such as liver, spleen, kidney, pituitary, solar plexus and uterus. 

Η ρεφλεξολογία εφαρμόστηκε για 30 λεπτά σε κάθε πόδι (60 λεπτά συνολικά) ως γενική ρεφλεξολογία συμπεριλαμβανομένων 15 σταδίων. 1. Ηλιακό πλέγμα, 2 & 3, Περιοχές που σχετίζονται με τα όργανα της πέψης, 4. Πυελική περιοχή, 5. Υπόφυση, 6. Κόλποι, 7. Άνω και κάτω άκρα (εξωτερικές πλευρές των ποδιών), 8. Σπονδυλική στήλη (εσωτερικές πλευρές των ποδιών), 9. Πνεύμονες, 10. Πάνω μέρος του στήθους, 11 & 12. Οι πλευρές, στα πόδια, 13. Ωοθήκες, 14. Μήτρα και 15. Σάλπιγγες. Εφαρμόστηκε και ρεφλεξολογία σε συγκεκριμένα σημεία, συμπεριλαμβανομένων των σημείων που σχετίζονται με τον πόνο του τοκετού, όπως συκώτι, σπλήνα, νεφρά, υπόφυση, ηλιακό πλέγμα και μήτρα.

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Reflexology on Pain Intensity and Duration of Labor on 120 Primiparas

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