Patients with intervertebral disc herniation (IVDH) seek complementary and conventional medical therapies to manage related problems. This study aimed to determine the effectiveness of Reiki compared with physiotherapy to relieve the lower back pain intensity and to improve the activities of daily living (ADL) in the IDVH patients. In this clinical trial study, 60 patients with IVDH were randomly assigned to one of the Reiki, physiotherapy, and drug therapy groups. The severity of pain and the ADL were measured using visual analog scale (VAS) pain and ADL-Instrumental ADL questionnaire before and after the intervention. A significant difference was found in pain intensity and ADL improvement between Reiki and the drug therapy. However, there was no significant difference between Reiki and physiotherapy groups in managing pain and improving ADL. Reiki and physiotherapy are effective methods in managing pain and improving ADL in patients with IVDH; however, Reiki is more cost-effective and faster treatment method than physiotherapy.
Keywords: activities of daily living; energy therapy; intervertebral disc hernia; lower back pain; physical therapy.