1.    Low back pain in pregnant women

Ginekol Pol. 2010 Nov;81(11):851-5. [Article in Polish]

Majchrzycki M, Mrozikiewicz PM, Kocur P, Bartkowiak-Wieczorek J, Hoffmann M, Stryła W, Seremak-Mrozikiewicz A, Grześkowiak E.


Katedra i Klinika Rehabilitacji Uniwersytetu Medycznego w Poznaniu.


Pain of lumbosacral segment of the vertebral column and the pelvis concerns about 45% of all pregnant women. The change of the body posture during pregnancy is the result of gravity centre relocation, which affects the musculosceletal system. Development of the joint, ligament and myofascial dysfunctions, as well as the pain in the lumbosacral segment and the pelvis, are the most common reasons of spine pain. The aim of this review is to present the current state of knowledge about lumbar spine pain in pregnant women with special focus on the pain connected with muscular, joint and ligament disorders. Pregnancy is a serious burden for the female osteo-skeletal system. Lumbar pain with different location and intensification is the negative consequence of the position changes during pregnancy. Pharmacotherapy could be useful only in cases of intensive low back pain, with possible application of small spectrum of drugs that are safe during pregnancy. Physical therapy including manual therapy exercises, massage and techniques of local anesthesia are alternative methods in case of low back pain in pregnant women.

PMID: 21365902

PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE


2.    Pregnancy and labor massage


Expert Rev Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Mar;5(2):177-181.

Field T.


Touch Research Institute, University of Miami School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics (D-820), PO Box 016820, Miami, FL 33101, USA.


Massage therapy has been demonstrated to be effective during pregnancy. Women who received massage therapy reported decreased depression, anxiety, and leg and back pain. Cortisol levels decreased and, in turn, excessive fetal activity decreased, and the rate of prematurity was lower in the massage group. In a study of labor pain, women who received massage therapy experienced significantly less pain, and their labors were on average 3 h shorter with less need for medication. An underlying mechanism we have been exploring is that these effects are mediated by increased vagal activity. This likely occurs by the stimulation of pressure receptors that are innervated by vagal afferent fibers, which ultimately project to the limbic system, including hypothalamic structures involved in autonomic nervous system regulation and cortisol secretion.

PMID: 20479957


PMCID: PMC2870995


3.    Comparison between massage and music therapies to relieve the severity of labor pain

Womens Health (Lond Engl). 2010 May;6(3):377-81.

Taghinejad H, Delpisheh A, Suhrabi Z.


Ilam University of Medical Sciences, Ilam, Iran.



During labor, women experience a high level of intense, stressful and steady pain that may negatively affect both mothers and neonates. Painkillers have previously been used for childbearing women, but nowadays, owing to some well-known limitations and serious side effects, nonpharmacologic methods such as massage and music therapies are being broadly recommended. The present clinical trial was conducted to compare the effects of massage and music therapies on the severity of labor pain in the Ilam province of western Iran.

Materials & Methods

Overall, 101 primigravidae who were hospitalized for vaginal delivery were recruited and randomly stratified into two groups of either massage (n = 51) or music (n = 50) therapies. Pain was measured using the visual analog scale and the two groups were compared in terms of pain severity before and after the interventions.


Mothers in the massage therapy group had a lower level of pain compared with those in the music therapy group (p = 0.009). A significant difference was observed between the two groups in terms of pain severity after intervention (p = 0.01). Agonizing, or most severe, labor pain was significantly relieved after massage therapy (p = 0.001).


Massage therapy was an effective method for reducing and relieving labor pain compared with music therapy and can be clinically recommended as an alternative, safe and affordable method of pain relief where using either pharmacological or nonpharmacological methods are optional.

PMID: 20426604

PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE


4. Outcomes of a massage intervention on teen mothers: a pilot study.

Oswalt KL, Biasini FJ, Wilson LL, Mrug S.




University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA.


The difficulties that adolescent mothers encounter as a result of the combined stress of adolescence, parenthood, maintaining peer relationships, and establishing positive relationships with their infants have been identified in the literature, and these characteristics are often associated with poor infant outcomes. This study was designed to examine the effects of an infant massage intervention on adolescent mothers' attitudes and perceptions of their infants. Twenty-five African-American adolescent mothers (mean age 16.13 years), who were enrolled in a parent training program for high school students in a southern state, participated in the project. The mothers were assigned randomly to an intervention (9) or control group (16). After a brief training session, participants in the intervention group practiced massage with their infants for approximately 2 months. Data analysis was based on the 15 participants who completed both baseline and 2-month follow-up measures (8 in the control group and 7 in the intervention group). This study found some support for teaching infant massage to adolescent mothers as a way of enhancing maternal-infant physical contact and lowering depression, as well as positively influencing mothers' perceptions of infant temperament. Results indicate that infant massage training may lead to improvements beyond those achieved with a typical parent education curriculum and shows potential as a low-cost supplement to current teen mother education in high schools.

PMID: 19916344

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


5. Structural reflex zone therapy in pregnancy and childbirth: a new approach.

Tiran D.




Expectancy Ltd, London, UK; University of Greenwich, London, UK. info@expectancy.co.uk


This paper is adapted from Denise Tiran's forthcoming new book on pregnancy reflexology, and introduces an innovative new approach which has been termed "structural reflex zone therapy". From a reflexology perspective structural reflex zone therapy (RZT) draws on the Hanne Marquardt system, but is based also on the principles of osteopathy, in which the musculoskeletal system is seen as the main supporting framework of the body and the feet are used purely as a medium through which misalignments can be treated. Structural reflex zone therapy is based on the author's clinical work and research over a 25-year period, and although specifically applied here to maternity care, could easily be adapted for other clinical specialities. In this paper, the way in which structural RZT can be helpful for two particular pregnancy conditions - stress and backache - is considered.

PMID: 19880088

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


6. Pregnancy massage reduces prematurity, low birthweight and postpartum depression.

Field T, Diego M, Hernandez-Reif M, Deeds O, Figueiredo B.




Touch Research Institutes, University of Miami Medical School, PO Box 016820, Miami, FL 33101, USA. tfield@med.miami.edu


Pregnant women diagnosed with major depression were given 12 weeks of twice per week massage therapy by their significant other or only standard treatment as a control group. The massage therapy group women versus the control group women not only had reduced depression by the end of the therapy period, but they also had reduced depression and cortisol levels during the postpartum period. Their newborns were also less likely to be born prematurely and low birthweight, and they had lower cortisol levels and performed better on the Brazelton Neonatal Behavioral Assessment habituation, orientation and motor scales.

PMID: 19646762

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


7. Massage therapy reduces pain in pregnant women, alleviates prenatal depression in both parents and improves their relationships.

Field T, Figueiredo B, Hernandez-Reif M, Diego M, Deeds O, Ascencio A.




Touch Research Institute, University of Miami Medical School, Miami, FL, USA. tfield@med.miami.edu


Prenatally depressed women (N=47) were randomly assigned to a group that received massage twice weekly from their partners from 20 weeks gestation until the end of pregnancy or a control group. Self-reported leg pain, back pain, depression, anxiety and anger decreased more for the massaged pregnant women than for the control group women. In addition, the partners who massaged the pregnant women versus the control group partners reported less depressed mood, anxiety and anger across the course of the massage therapy period. Finally, scores on a relationship questionnaire improved more for both the women and the partners in the massage group. These data suggest that not only mood states but also relationships improve mutually when depressed pregnant women are massaged by their partners.

PMID: 19083666

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


8. The effectiveness of foot reflexology in inducing ovulation: a sham-controlled randomized trial.

Holt J, Lord J, Acharya U, White A, O'Neill N, Shaw S, Barton A. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18565520



South Devon School of Reflexology, Morningside, Loddiswell, Devon, United Kingdom.



To determine whether foot reflexology, a complementary therapy, has an effect greater than sham reflexology on induction of ovulation.


Sham-controlled randomized trial with patients and statistician blinded.


Infertility clinic in Plymouth, United Kingdom.


Forty-eight women attending the clinic with anovulation.


Women were randomized to receive eight sessions of either genuine foot reflexology or sham reflexology with gentle massage over 10 weeks.


The primary outcome was ovulation detected by serum progesterone level of >30 nmol/L during the study period.


Twenty-six patients were randomized to genuine reflexology and 22 to sham (one randomized patient was withdrawn). Patients remained blinded throughout the trial. The rate of ovulation during true reflexology was 11 out of 26 (42%), and during sham reflexology it was 10 out of 22 (46%). Pregnancy rates were 4 out of 26 in the true group and 2 out of 22 in the control group. Because of recruitment difficulties, the required sample size of 104 women was not achieved.


Patient blinding of reflexology studies is feasible. Although this study was too small to reach a definitive conclusion on the specific effect of foot reflexology, the results suggest that any effect on ovulation would not be clinically relevant. Sham reflexology may have a beneficial general effect, which this study was not designed to detect.

PMID: 18565520

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


9. Massage or music for pain relief in labour: a pilot randomised placebo controlled trial.

Kimber L, McNabb M, Mc Court C, Haines A, Brocklehurst P.




Horton Maternity Unit, Oxford Road, Banbury, Oxfordshire 0X16 9AL, UK.


Research on massage therapy for maternal pain and anxiety in labour is currently limited to four small trials. Each used different massage techniques, at different frequencies and durations, and relaxation techniques were included in three trials. Given the need to investigate massage interventions that complement maternal neurophysiological adaptations to labour and birth pain(s), we designed a pilot randomised controlled trial (RCT) to test the effects of a massage programme practised during physiological changes in pain threshold, from late pregnancy to birth, on women's reported pain, measured by a visual analogue scale (VAS) at 90 min following birth. To control for the potential bias of the possible effects of support offered within preparation for the intervention group, the study included 3 arms--intervention (massage programme with relaxation techniques), placebo (music with relaxation techniques) and control (usual care). The placebo offered a non-pharmacological coping strategy, to ensure that use of massage was the only difference between intervention and placebo groups. There was a trend towards slightly lower mean pain scores in the intervention group but these differences were not statistically significant. No differences were found in use of pharmacological analgesia, need for augmentation or mode of delivery. There was a trend towards more positive views of labour preparedness and sense of control in the intervention and placebo groups, compared with the control group. These findings suggest that regular massage with relaxation techniques from late pregnancy to birth is an acceptable coping strategy that merits a large trial with sufficient power to detect differences in reported pain as a primary outcome measure.

PMID: 18304848

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]



10. A comparison of massage effects on labor pain using the McGill Pain Questionnaire.

Chang MY, Chen CH, Huang KF.




National Tainan Institue of Nursing, ROC.


The purpose of this study was to describe the characteristics of pain during labor with and without massage. Sixty primiparas in labor were randomly assigned to either a massage or control group and tested using the self-reported Short-Form McGill Pain Questionnaire (SF-MPQ) at 3 phases of cervical dilation: phase 1 dilation (3-4 cm), phase 2 dilation (5-7 cm), and phase 3 dilation (8-10 cm). The massage group received standard nursing care and massage intervention, whereas the control group received standard nursing care only. The results of this study showed: (1) In both groups, as cervical dilation increased, there were significant increases in pain intensity as measured by SF-MPQ; (2) massage lessened pain intensity at phase 1 and phase 2, but there were no significant differences between the groups at phase 3; (3) the most frequently selected five sensory words chosen by both groups were similar at phases 1 and 2- (a) sore, (b) sharp, (c) heavy, (d) throbbing, and (e) cramping, while of the 4 affective classes, "fearful" and "tiring-exhausting" were the most used by participants to describe the affective dimension. The results of this study indicate that, although massage cannot change the characteristics of pain experienced by women in labor, it can effectively decrease labor pain intensity at phase 1 and phase 2 of cervical dilation during labor. Nurses and caregivers could consider using massage to help laboring women through the labor pain.

PMID: 16967401

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


11.Does regular massage from late pregnancy to birth decrease maternal pain perception during labour and birth?--A feasibility study to investigate a programme of massage, controlled breathing and visualization, from 36 weeks of pregnancy until birth.

Nabb MT, Kimber L, Haines A, McCourt C.




Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences, Kingston University & St George's Hospital Medical School, St George's Hospital, Cranmer Terrace, London SW17 ORE, UK. mmcnabb@hscs.sgul.ac.uk


The present study was undertaken to produce a detailed specification of a programme of massage, controlled breathing and visualization performed regularly by birth partners, from 36 weeks gestation and assisted by a trained professional, following hospital admission during labour and birth. As current research on massage interventions for pain relief in labour is poorly characterized, we began by undertaking a feasibility study on an established massage programme [Goldstone LA. Massage as an orthodox medical treatment past and future. Complementary Therapies in Nursing & Midwifery. 2000;6:169-75]. The intervention was designed in light of experimental findings that repeated massage sessions over 14 days increases pain threshold, by an interaction between oxytocin and opioid neurons [Lund I, Yu L-C, Uvnas-Moberg K, Wang J, Yu C, Kurosawa M, et al. Repeated massage-like stimulation induces long-term effects on nociception: contribution of oxytocinergic mechanisms. European Journal of Neuroscience 2002;16:330-8]. A 4 week time-frame was selected to coincide with a physiological increase in maternal pain threshold [Cogan R, Spinnato JA. Pain and Discomfort Thresholds in Late Pregnancy. Pain 1986;27:63-8, Whipple B, Josimovich JB, Komisaruk BR. Sensory thresholds during the antepartum, intrapartum, and postpartum periods. International Journal of Nursing Studies 1990;27(3):213-21, Gintzler AR, Komisaruk BR. Analgesia is produced by uterocervical mechano-stimulation in rats: roles of afferent nerves and implications for analgesia of pregnancy and parturition. Brain Research 1991;566:299-302, Gintzler AR, Liu N-J. The maternal spinal cord: biochemical and physiological correlates of steroid-activated antinociceptive processes. In: Russell JA, Douglas AJ, Windle RJ, Ingram CD, editors., Progress in Brain Research. Volume 133. The Maternal Brain. Neurobiological and Neuroendocrine adaptation and disorders in pregnancy and postpartum. Amsterdam: Elsevier Science, 2001. p. 83-97]. The main objective was to measure the effects of the programme on maternal pain perception during labour and birth. To detect any effect of massage during labour, on maternal cortisol and catecholamines, cord venous blood was taken to measure plasma concentrations following birth. Twenty-five nulliparous (N) and 10 multiparous (M) women participated in the study. Cortisol values were similar to published studies following labour without massage but pain scores on a Visual Analogue Scale (VAS), at 90min following birth were significantly lower than scores recorded 2 days postpartum [Capogna G, Alahuhta S, Celleno D, De Vlieger H, Moreira J, Morgan B, et al. Maternal expectations and experiences of labour pain and analgesia: a multi-centre study of nulliparous women. International Journal of Obstetric Anaesthesia 1996;5:229-35]. The mean score was 6.6. Previous studies suggest that a reduction from 8.5 to 7.5 would significantly reduce pharmacological analgesia in labour [Capogna G, Alahuhta S, Celleno D, De Vlieger H, Moreira J, Morgan B, et al. Maternal expectations and experiences of labour pain and analgesia: a multi-centre study of nulliparous women. International Journal of Obstetric Anaesthesia 1996;5:229-35].

PMID: 16835035

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


12. Tactile massage and severe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy--women's experiences.

Agren A, Berg M.




Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Hospital of Skövde, Sweden. annelie.agren@vgregion.se


Nausea and vomiting during pregnancy is a condition with an obscure aetiology. The treatment is symptomatic but there is a lack of alternative treatments. Tactile massage is known to give relaxation and increased well-being in connection with different illnesses, but has never been studied on women with severe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy (SNVP). The aim of this study was to describe hospitalized women's experiences of SNVP and of tactile massage. A phenomenological method was used. Ten hospitalized women with SNVP were included. Each woman was given tactile massage on three separate occasions. After the final massage an open interview was used covering both the experience of severe nausea and vomiting, and of tactile massage. The findings revealed an essential meaning summarizing the experience: to obtain a relieving moment of rest and access to the whole body when nausea rules life. When nausea is experienced as controlling a woman's life, tactile massage is experienced as promoting relaxation and gives her an opportunity to regain access to her body. The findings suggest that tactile massage is a good alternative and complement to traditional treatment of SNVP.

PMID: 16756522

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


13. A retrospective cohort study exploring the relationship between antenatal reflexology and intranatal outcomes.

McNeill JA, Alderdice FA, McMurray F.




Queen's University, Belfast, Rm G626, Ground Floor, Musgrave and Clarke, Royal Group of Hospitals Trust, Grosvenor Rd., Belfast, BT12 6BJ, Northern Ireland. j.mcneill@qub.ac.uk


The integration of reflexology into midwifery care has become more common in recent years as a result of a developing interest in alternative and complementary therapies and also due to the integration of new skills into midwifery practice. The objective of this study was to investigate the association of antenatal reflexology with different outcomes in the intranatal period. The key variables of interest were onset of labour, duration of labour, analgesia used and mode of delivery. The findings showed there was no significant difference in the onset of labour or duration of labour between the two groups. The group who had four or more reflexology treatments had a reduced length of labour but this was not statistically significant. There was a significant difference in the use of Entonox between the two groups with the reflexology group having a lower uptake. Fewer women in the reflexology group had a normal labour with a higher percentage of women having a forceps delivery. In conclusion the only statistically significant difference between groups was less use of Entonox in the reflexology group. Further research requires standardized treatment and outcome measurement using prospective randomized designs with large samples.

PMID: 16648089

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


14. Massage during last weeks of pregnancy reduces episiotomies during delivery.

Kuehn BM.



PMID: 16551704

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


15. Vagal activity, gastric motility, and weight gain in massaged preterm neonates.

Diego MA, Field T, Hernandez-Reif M.




Touch Research Institute, Department of Pediatrics, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL 33101, USA. mdiego@med.miami.edu



Multiple studies have documented an increase in weight gain after 5 to 10 days of massage therapy for preterm neonates. The massaged preterm neonates did not consume more calories than the control neonates. One potential mechanism for these effects might involve massage-induced increases in vagal activity, which in turn may lead to increased gastric motility and thereby weight gain.


The present randomized study explored this potential underlying mechanism by assessing gastric motility and sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system activity in response to massage therapy (moderate pressure) versus sham massage (light pressure) and control conditions in a group of preterm neonates.


Compared with preterm neonates receiving sham massage, preterm neonates receiving massage therapy exhibited greater weight gain and increased vagal tone and gastric motility during and immediately after treatment. Gastric motility and vagal tone during massage therapy were significantly related to weight gain.


The weight gain experienced by preterm neonates receiving moderate-pressure massage therapy may be mediated by increased vagal activity and gastric motility.

PMID: 16027695

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


16. The effects of shiatsu on post-term pregnancy.

Ingram J, Domagala C, Yates S.




St. Michael's Hospital, United Bristol Healthcare Trust, Southwell St., Bristol BS2 8EG, UK. Jennifer.ingram@ubht.swest.nhs.uk



To evaluate the effects of shiatsu techniques, as taught by hospital midwives, on the progress of post-term labours and deliveries, to inform practice.


A pilot audit on the use of shiatsu for post-term pregnancy at St. Michael's Hospital, Bristol, from March to July 2000.


Sixty-six women, who attended a consultant clinic hospital appointment at 40 weeks gestation, were taught the massage techniques by one midwife, who had completed the shiatsu course. Seventy-six comparison women were those who attended similar clinics when the midwife was not on duty.


The audit extracted outcome information from the Stork hospital database including induction, type of delivery, length of labour and analgesia used.


Post-term women who used shiatsu were significantly more likely to labour spontaneously than those who did not (p=0.038). Of those who had used shiatsu, 17% more went into spontaneous labour compared to those who were not taught shiatsu.

PMID: 15907673

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


17. Massage therapy effects on depressed pregnant women.

Field T, Diego MA, Hernandez-Reif M, Schanberg S, Kuhn C




Department of Pediatrics, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL 33101, USA. tfield@med.miami.edu


Eighty-four depressed pregnant women were recruited during the second trimester of pregnancy and randomly assigned to a massage therapy group, a progressive muscle relaxation group or a control group that received standard prenatal care alone. These groups were compared to each other and to a non-depressed group at the end of pregnancy. The massage therapy group participants received two 20 min therapy sessions by their significant others each week for 16 weeks of pregnancy, starting during the second trimester. The relaxation group provided themselves with progressive muscle relaxation sessions on the same time schedule. Immediately after the massage therapy sessions on the first and last days of the 16-week period the women reported lower levels of anxiety and depressed mood and less leg and back pain. By the end of the study the massage group had higher dopamine and serotonin levels and lower levels of cortisol and norepinephrine. These changes may have contributed to the reduced fetal activity and the better neonatal outcome for the massage group (i.e. lesser incidence of prematurity and low birthweight), as well as their better performance on the Brazelton Neonatal Behavior Assessment. The data suggest that depressed pregnant women and their offspring can benefit from massage therapy.

PMID: 15715034

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


18. The effect of breathing and skin stimulation techniques on labour pain perception of Turkish women.

Yildirim G, Sahin NH.




Department of Nursing, University of Istanbul, Istanbul, Turkey. gulumyil@yahoo.com



To determine the effect of breathing techniques and nurse-administered massage on the pain perception of pregnant woman during labour.


The present study was conducted among pregnant women (75% primiparous) admitted to the SSK Bakirkoy Women and Children's Hospital (Istanbul, Turkey) between January 1, and September 1, 2000. The patients were in their 38th to 42nd week of pregnancy, not at high risk and expected to have normal vaginal delivery. They were selected from volunteers by nonrandom sampling.


The present study involved 40 cases, with 20 in the experimental group and 20 in the control group. Data were obtained through the visual analogue scale, inspection form, observation form and postnatal interview form. The study investigators provided information about labour, breathing techniques and massage to the pregnant women assigned to the experimental group at the beginning of labour (latent phase). A study investigator also accompanied them during labour. These women received nurse-administered massage and were encouraged to breathe and perform self-administered massage. They were also instructed to change their positions and to relax.


Study results demonstrated that nursing support and patient-directed education concerning labour and nonpharmacological pain control methods (eg, breathing and cutaneous stimulation techniques) were effective in reducing the perception of pain by pregnant women (when provided in the latent labour phase before delivery), leading to a more satisfactory birth experience.

Comment in

PMID: 15605131

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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19. Abdominal massage: another cause of maternal mortality.

Ugboma HA, Akani CI.




Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Health Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

Erratum in

  • Niger J Med. 2005 Oct-Dec;14(4):459.



Abdominal massage is an age long practice among obstetric and non obstetric patients in different parts of the riverine areas of Southern Nigeria.


To highlight the consequences associated with this practice in pregnancy and labour even among literate clients.


Two hundred and eighty four pregnant women who presented as obstetric emergencies in pregnancy and labour at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital from 1st May 1988 to 31st July 1998 were studied.


Forty two (14.79%) of the 284 patients had abdominal massage. Maternal mortality rate was 4.76% while the perinatal mortality rate was 14.29%. Twenty four of the patients were literate though 15 of them only had primary education. Most of the patients were unbooked (76.19%). The complication of pregnancy noted were cephalo pelvic disproportion /obstructed labour (28. 57%) and abruption placenta (23.80%); placenta previa (9.52%); retained placenta (4.76%) abortion / preterm labour (19.04%); genital injuries and tears (7.14%); perinatal death (14.28%); uterine rupture (9.52%); maternal mortality (4.76%).


Abdominal massage is a silent killer, which has added to matemal and perinatal mortality and morbidity in this region. Ignorance, illiteracy and poverty have sustained this practice, while underdevelopment, inaccessibility and ill-equipped medical facilities have kept this traditional practice flourishing even amongst the educated group. The time to stop this form of avoidable losses is now. This can be achieved through public health approach, mass literacy, even distribution of affordable healthcare services, improved social services and transportation, robust economy and a grass root involvement of rural programmes aimed at eradicating harmful traditional practice.

PMID: 15532228

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


20. Ice massage for the reduction of labor pain.

Waters BL, Raisler J.




SANE Project, LaPinon Rape Recovery Center, Las Cruces, NM, USA.


The current study investigated the use of ice massage of the acupressure energy meridian point large intestine 4 (LI4) to reduce labor pain during contractions. LI4 is located on the medial midpoint of the first metacarpal, within 3 to 4 mm of the web of skin between the thumb and forefinger. A one-group, pretest, posttest design was chosen, which used 100-mm Visual Analog Scales (VAS) and the McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ) ranked numerically and verbally to measure pain levels; the pretest served as the control. Study participants were Hispanic and white Medicaid recipients who received prenatal care at a women's clinic staffed by certified nurse-midwives and obstetricians. Participants noted a pain reduction mean on the VAS of 28.22 mm on the left hand and 11.93 mm on the right hand. The postdelivery ranked MPQ dropped from number 3 (distressing) to number 2 (discomforting). The study results suggest that ice massage is a safe, noninvasive, nonpharmacological method of reducing labor pain.

PMID: 14526344

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


21. Reflexology in preconception and pregnancy.

Hensman M.

Pract Midwife. 2009 Jul-Aug;12(7):17-9.



PMID: 19653386

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]