The effect of lavender oil on stress, bispectral index values, and needle insertion pain in volunteers

J Altern Complement Med. 2011 Sep;17(9):823-6. doi: 10.1089/acm.2010.0644. Epub 2011 Aug 19.


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether lavender oil aromatherapy can reduce the bispectral index (BIS) values and stress and decrease the pain of needle insertion in 30 volunteers.

Subjects and methods: Thirty (30) healthy volunteers were randomly allocated to 2 groups: the experimental group received oxygen with a face mask coated with lavender oil for 5 minutes, and the control group received oxygen through a face mask with no lavender oil for 5 minutes. The stress level (0=no stress, 10=maximum stress), BIS value, and pain intensity of needle insertion (0=no pain, 10=worst pain imaginable) were measured.

Results: There were no significant differences in age, sex, height, and weight between the two groups. Stress level, BIS value, and pain intensity of needle insertion before aromatherapy were similar between the two groups. However, the stress values (p<0.001) and BIS value (p<0.001) after aromatherapy were significantly reduced compared with the control. In addition, the pain intensity of needle insertion was significantly decreased after aromatherapy compared with the control (p<0.001).

Conclusions: Lavender aromatherapy in volunteers provided a significant decrease in the stress levels and in the BIS values. In addition, it significantly reduced the pain intensity of needle insertion.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Aromatherapy*
  • Consciousness / drug effects*
  • Consciousness Monitors
  • Humans
  • Lavandula / chemistry*
  • Needlestick Injuries / complications*
  • Oils, Volatile / therapeutic use*
  • Pain / etiology
  • Pain / prevention & control*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Plant Oils / therapeutic use*
  • Stress, Psychological / therapy*


  • Oils, Volatile
  • Plant Extracts
  • Plant Oils
  • lavender oil