Reflexology and relaxation on psychological symptoms in 75 women with multiple sclerosis

11 mins read
woman A Comparison the Effects of Reflexology and Relaxation on the Psychological Symptoms in Women With Multiple Sclerosis



Multiple sclerosis (MS) occurs with a variety of physical and psychological symptoms, yet there is not a conclusive cure for this disease. Complementary medicine is a current treatment which seems is effective in relieving symptoms of patients with MS. Therefore, this study is aimed to determine and compare the effects of reflexology and relaxation on anxiety, stress, and depression in women with MS.

Subjects and methods: 

This study is a randomized clinical trial that is done on 75 women with MS referred to MS Clinic of Kashani Hospital. After simple non random sampling, participants were randomly assigned by minimization method to three groups: reflexology, relaxation and control (25 patients in each group).

In the experimental groups were performed reflexology and relaxation interventions within 4 weeks, twice a week for 40 min and the control group were received only routine treatment as directed by a doctor. Data were collected through depression anxiety and stress scale questionnaire, before, immediately after and 2 months after interventions in all three groups.

Chi-square, Kruskal-Wallis, repeated measures analysis of variance and one-way analysis of variance and least significant difference post hoc test via SPSS version 18 were used to analyze the data (P < 0.05) was considered as significant level.


The results showed a significant reduction in the severity of psychological symptoms: anxiety, stress and depression during the different times in the reflexology and relaxation groups as compared with the control group (P < 0.05).


The results showed that reflexology and relaxation in relieving anxiety, stress and depression are effective in women with MS. Hence, these two methods, as effective techniques, can be recommended.

Keywords: Anxiety; multiple sclerosis; reflexology; relaxation; ; psychological symptoms; stress and depression.


Soheili M, Nazari F, Shaygannejad V, Valiani M. A comparison the effects of reflexology and relaxation on the psychological symptoms in women with multiple sclerosis. J Educ Health Promot. 2017;6:11. Published 2017 Apr 19. doi:10.4103/jehp.jehp_166_14

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 reflexologist started general reflexology with massage on all reflex points on the plantar surface using thumb and fore finger and then specialized reflexology was done through the pressure points of foot reflexes such as solar plexus, hypothalamic, pituitary, spinal cord, (K1), and adrenal glands and pelvic. First, for the left foot and then for the right foot (20 min each).

The major reflexology points in the feet were put under pressure using the thumb and index finger  in a worm-like movement. Finally, the intervention was completed with massage of the solar plexus. The interventions of reflexology and relaxation were performed for 4 weeks, twice a week for 40 min in each session, in a bright, silent, warm room with suitable temperature and ventilation.

Ο ρεφλεξολόγος ξεκίνησε με μάλαξη σε όλα τα ρεφλεξολογικά σημεία στην πελματιαία επιφάνεια με τον αντίχειρα και το δείκτη και στη συνέχεια άσκησε εξειδικευμένη ρεφλεξολογία στα ρεφλεξολογικά σημεία των ποδιών, όπως ηλιακό πλέγμα, υποθάλαμος, υπόφυση, νωτιαίος μυελός, επινεφρίδια και λεκάνη. Πρώτα, για το αριστερό πόδι και μετά για το δεξί πόδι (20 λεπτά το καθένα).

Τα κύρια αντανακλαστικά σημεία στα πόδια τέθηκαν υπό πίεση χρησιμοποιώντας τον αντίχειρα και το δείκτη και η κίνηση ήταν αυτή της “κάμπιας”. Τέλος, η παρέμβαση ολοκληρώθηκε με μασάζ του ηλιακού πλέγματος. Οι παρεμβάσεις ρεφλεξολογίας και χαλάρωσης πραγματοποιήθηκαν για 4 εβδομάδες, δύο φορές την εβδομάδα για 40 λεπτά/συνεδρία, σε ένα φωτεινό, ήσυχo, ζεστό δωμάτιο με κατάλληλη θερμοκρασία και αερισμό.

Previous publication

Reflexology vs relaxation on fatigue in 75 women with multiple sclerosis

Next publication

Reflexology on Pain Intensity and Duration of Labor on 120 Primiparas