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Facilitating nurses’ knowledge of the utilisation of reflexology in adults with chronic diseases to enable informed health education during comprehensive nursing care

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Abstract:

An integrative literature review of identified scientific evidence, published from January 2000 to December 2008, of the utilisation of reflexology as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) modalities to promote well-being and quality of life in adults with chronic diseases was done to facilitate nurses to give informed health education during comprehensive nursing care to patients with chronic diseases. Selected accessible databases were searched purposefully for research articles (N = 1171). Pre-set inclusion criteria were applied during the study selection process. The methodological study quality was reviewed and appraised with appropriate tools from the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) and the American Dietetic Association’s (ADA) Evidence analysis manual (n = 21). Evidence extraction, analysis and synthesis of studies (n = 18) were done through the evidence class rating and level of strength as prescribed in the manuals of ADA and CASP. Findings indicate statistically significant reduction in the frequency of seizures in patients with intractable epilepsy, an improvement of sensory and urinary symptoms associated with multiple sclerosis and clinically significant reduction of anxiety and pain in patients with cancer and fibromyalgia syndrome. These findings can be utilised by nurses to inform patients with these chronic diseases about alternative ways of treatment.

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