How effective is reflexology on physiological parameters and weaning time from mechanical ventilation in patients undergoing cardiovascular surgery?
Introduction: Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in both developed and developing countries. The present research was designed to determine the effects of reflexology on physiological parameters and mechanical weaning (MV) weaning time. Methods: In this non-randomized controlled clinical trial, 85 patients who underwent open heart surgery were allocated into either an experimental group (n = 42) or aut control group (n = 43) using convenience sampling. The participants were informed about the study and a written and oral informed consent was obtained from each patient. Along with the study, a twenty-thirty-minute foot reflexology and routine care treatments were applied to the patients in the experimental group and control group, respectively in the post-operative period. In this context, physiological parameters and mechanical ventilation weaning time of the patients were examined at certain intervals. Results: According to the values obtained before reflexology for experimental and control group, the pulse rate (p = 0.013) and diastolic blood pressure (p = 0.021) of the patients in the experimental group at 5 min before reflexology were significantly higher. Moreover, oxygen saturation values of the patients in the experimental group at 5 min after extubation were lower (p = 0.012). However, reflexology did not exhibit any significant changes in other physiological parameters but the mechanical ventilation weaning time after reflexology was shorter in the experimental group (p = 0.023). Conclusion: Reflexology did not have a significant effect on physiological parameters in patients receiving mechanical ventilation support. Shortening the weaning time from mechanical ventilation suggests that it might be applied effectively in patients receiving mechanical ventilation support in intensive care unit.