Purpose: To identify the effects of foot reflexology massage on fatigue, stress and depression of postpartum women.
Methods: A nonequivalent control group pre-post design was used. A total of 70 women in a postpartum care center were recruited and were assigned to the experimental group (35) or control group (35). Foot reflexology massage was provided to the experimental group once a day for three days. Data were collected before and after the intervention program which was carried out from December, 2013 to February, 2014. Data were analyzed using Chi-square test, Fisher's exact test, and t-test.
Results: The level of fatigue in the experimental group was significantly lower than the control group (t=-2.74, p=.008). The level of cortisol in the urine of women in the experimental group was significantly lower than the control group (t=-2.19, p=.032). The level of depression in the experimental group was significantly lower than the control group (t=-3.00, p=.004).
Conclusion: The results show that the foot reflexology massage is an effective nursing intervention to relieve fatigue, stress, and depression for postpartum women.
Keywords: Cortisone; Fatigue; Foot; Massage; Postpartum depression.