The Effect of Acupressure Applied to Point LI4 on Perceived Labor Pains

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Abstract

Controlling labor pain is one of the basic goals for caregivers during the birthing process. There are many pharmacological and nonpharmacological methods that are used for controlling pain and helping the mother to cope with pain and have a favorable labor. The study was planned as a randomized, controlled experimental study to detect the effect of acupressure applied to Point LI4 on perceived labor pains. The study sample comprised 88 pregnant women (44 acupressure group, 44 control group), who complied with the study guidelines, agreed with the conditions of the study, and signed the informed consent. Acupressure was applied to the study group when cervical dilatation reached 4 to 5 cm and again when cervical dilation was 7 to 8 cm. Acupressure was applied to Point LI4 on both the hands at the same time from the beginning to the end of the contraction (16 times). Evaluation with the visual analog scale was made 6 times: when the pregnant woman was first admitted to the hospital, before and after acupressure, and within 2 hours after delivery. The control group received routine care. There were statistically significant differences between the groups in subjective labor pain scores (P < .0001). There was a significant difference between the groups in terms of total duration of labor. As shown from our study, applying acupressure to Point LI4 was found to be effective in decreasing the perception of labor pains and shortening the labor (P < .05). Mothers were pleased with this treatment, but they found it insufficient to control their pain.

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