A pilot randomised controlled trial exploring the effects of antenatal reflexology on labour outcomes

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Objective: to investigate the effects of antenatal reflexology on labour outcomes. Design: secondary analysis of a pilot three-armed randomised controlled trial conducted between July 2012 and September 2013. Setting: a large UK inner city hospital maternity department. Participants: ninety primiparous women with a singleton pregnancy experiencing low back and / or pelvic girdle pain. Interventions: six weekly 30-minute reflexology treatments compared to sham (footbath) treatments or usual antenatal care only. Measurements: labour outcome data including labour onset, duration of the second stage of labour, epidural and Entonox usage, and mode of delivery. Participant feedback was collected prior to each treatment. Findings: labour outcomes were collected for 61 women (95.3%) who completed the study. The second stage of labour duration data, available for 42 women (62.5%) who had vaginal births, showed a mean reduction of 44 minutes in the reflexology group (73.56 minutes; SD= 53.78) compared to the usual care (117.92 minutes; SD=56.15) (p
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-144
Early online date10 Sep 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Sep 2017



  • Reflexology Labour Duration Nursing Midwifery Pilot study Low back pain Pelvic girdle pain Clinical Trial

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