Romatoid Artritli Hastalarda Aromaterapi Masajı ve Refleksoloji Uygulamalarının Ağrı ve Yorgunluğa Etkileri
Gök Metin, Zehra
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The purpose of this randomized controlled study was to investigate the effects of aromatherapy massage and reflexology on pain, and fatigue in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. This study was performed in rheumatology clinic of Hacettepe University between July 2014 and January 2015. The sample of the study consisted of a total of 51 rheumatoid arthritis patients, selected randomly to receive aromatherapy massage (n=17), reflexology (n=17) and a control group (n=17). The stratified randomization was used in this study. Patients were stratified according to age, pain score, fatigue, disease activity score and type of treatment protocol. Aromatherapy massage was applied on both knees of patients in aromatherapy group three times in a week for 30 minutes each, and reflexology was administered to both feet of patients in reflexology group once a week for 40 minutes each with home visits during 6 weeks. Control group were interviewed once a week and administered no intervention during the study. Pain severity was measured with “Visual Analogue Scale” and fatigue with “Fatigue Severity Scale". "Rheumatoid Arthritis Disease Activity Assessment Form" was used for disease activity, and health perception evaluated by "Health Assessment Questionnaire". Pain scores lessened in aromatherapy patients between 2nd and 6th weeks and fatigue between 4th and 6th weeks. As for reflexology group, pain and fatigue alleviated throughout the intervention period. Despite aromatherapy massage had not an impact on morning stiffness, reflexology shortened it as from 4th week (p<0.05). Both methods improved patients’ health perception (p<0.05). This study revealed that aromatherapy massage and reflexology were effective in reducing pain and fatigue and improving health perception in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Reflexology had solely been effective in reducing morning stiffness. Aromatherapy and reflexology should be used safely by nurses for symptom management of rheumatoid arthritis.