A pilot study of the effectiveness of reflexology in treating idiopathic constipation in women

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dc.contributor.author Woodward, A
dc.contributor.author Norton, Christine
dc.date.accessioned 2012-08-23T12:51:46Z
dc.date.available 2012-08-23T12:51:46Z
dc.date.issued 2012-08-23
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/1039
dc.description.abstract Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 16, 41-46 Objectives Constipation is a common problem in the UK, affecting up to 20% of the population. Reflexologists claim that reflexology can be beneficial in the treatment of constipation. The aim of this exploratory pilot study was to determine the effectiveness of reflexology in treating idiopathic constipation in women and it is the first study of the effectiveness of reflexology for the treatment of women with idiopathic constipation defined according to Rome II criteria. Methods Nineteen female patients referred to a specialist biofeedback service with idiopathic constipation defined by Rome II criteria were recruited. A course of reflexology treatment (weekly for six weeks) was given. Patients' subjective perception of constipation was recorded as well as the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HAD), the Short form 36 (SF36), whole gut transit and the Holistic Complementary and Alternative Medicine Questionnaire (HCAMQ) before and after the intervention. Results All participants completed the intervention and none were lost to follow-up. Ninety-four percent of participants identified their constipation to be improved to some extent. Ten participants had improved colonic transit times and two patients had normalised colonic transit. Ten patients (53%, p = 0.19) demonstrated an improved anxiety score and 11 participants (58%, p = 0.14) demonstrated an improved depression score on the HAD scales. Improvement was seen in general health, mental health and vitality on the SF36 scale, with vitality improving significantly (p < 0.05). Sixty-three percent of participants had a more positive attitude (p = 0.03) towards CAM and holistic health following treatment. Conclusions This study shows that in this sample reflexology has potential benefit for treating idiopathic constipation in women. Further randomised trials are required. en_US
dc.subject Reflexology en_US
dc.subject Idiopathic constipation en_US
dc.subject Constipation en_US
dc.subject Zone therapy
dc.subject Complementary medicine
dc.subject Massage
dc.subject Functional gastrointestinal disorder
dc.title A pilot study of the effectiveness of reflexology in treating idiopathic constipation in women en_US
dc.type Article en_US

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