Objective: To determine whether the application of acupressure bands would lead to a reduction in postoperative nausea and vomiting after cardiac surgery.
Design: Prospective, randomized, double-blind clinical trial.
Setting: University-affiliated tertiary care teaching hospital.
Participants: Adult patients undergoing cardiac surgery.
Interventions: One hundred fifty-two patients were enrolled to receive either acupressure treatment (n = 75) or placebo (n = 77). All patients had acupressure bands placed on both wrists before induction of anesthesia; those in the treatment group had a bead placed in contact with the P6 point on the forearm.
Measurements and main results: Patients were assessed for nausea, vomiting, and pain scores during the first 24 hours of the postoperative period. The incidences of nausea, vomiting, pain scores, and analgesic and antiemetic requirements were similar between the 2 groups. A subgroup analysis by gender implied that acupressure treatment may be effective only in female patients.
Conclusion: Acupressure treatment did not lead to a reduction in nausea, vomiting, or antiemetic requirements in patients after cardiac surgery.