Background: The burden of chronic kidney disease is increasing in alarming proportion all over the world. Hemodialysis is a well-recognized modality of treating
patients having end stage renal disease. Foot reflexology serves to relax, improve circulation and promote a general feeling of wellness among hemodialysis patients.
Aim: To assess the effectiveness of foot reflexology on physiological variables and anxiety among hemodialysis patients.
Material & Methods: A quasi-experimental pretest posttest control group design was used. Twelve patients underwent hemodialysis were selected from four hemodialysis centers. Foot reflexology given for 2 weeks in an alternative day. Researcher used numerical pain rating scale for pain, fatigue severity scale for fatigue, sphygmomanometer for blood pressure, doppler ultrasound for blood flow and Zung anxiety self-rating scale for anxiety to collect the data.
Results: Results revealed that hemodialysis patients in experimental group had reduced level of pain (t=3.523, p= 0.007), reduced fatigue (t = 2.924, p= 0.023), systolic blood pressure (t =3.149, p=0.013) with in normal limits and reduced anxiety (t = 3.086, p= 0.015). Correlation between posttest level of anxiety and physiological variables showed that there was a significant relationship between pain and anxiety at p<0.05 level and fatigue and anxiety at p<0.05 level.
Conclusion: Foot reflexology is a safe and effective tool, which helps in reducing physiological parameters and anxiety. This study highlights the need for adopting foot reflexology as an effective therapy in hospital settings.
Keywords: Foot Reflexology, Physiological Variables, Anxiety, Hemodialysis.