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Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2014 Oct 5;16(10):e16461. doi: 10.5812/ircmj.16461. eCollection 2014 Oct.

Effects of SP6 Acupuncture Point Stimulation on Labor Pain and Duration of Labor.

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epartment of Obstetrics and Gynecology Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, Karadeniz Technical University, Trabzon, Turkey.
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, Marmara University, Istanbul, Turkey.



Acupressure has been used frequently to improve labor, manage labor pain, and shorten delivery time. However, there has been little research-based evidence to support the positive effects of acupressure in the obstetric area and obstetric nursing.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of SP6 acupressure on labor pain and delivery time in primigravida women in labor.


The study was conducted at the Trabzon Maternity Hospital in Turkey. Its design was a randomized controlled clinical trial study using a single-blinded method. One hundred (100) primigravida women in labor were randomly assigned to either the SP6 acupressure (n = 50) or control group (n = 50). Acupressure was practiced 35 times in total on the SP6 point of both legs in the SP6 acupressure group; 15 times (during contraction) when cervical dilation was 2-3 cm, 10 times when cervical dilation was 5-6 cm and 10 times at 9-10 cm dilation, while the women in the control group received standard care. Labor pain was measured five times using a structured questionnaire of a subjective labor pain scale (visual analogue scale-VAS) when dilation was 2-3 cm (VAS 2), 5-6 cm (VAS 3) and 8-9 cm (VAS 4) before and after acupressure was applied to the SP6 point (VAS 1), and finally at the early postpartum period (VAS 5). The duration of labor in both groups was measured with a partograph and the length of delivery time was calculated in two stages: from 3 cm cervical dilation to full cervical dilation, and from full cervical dilation to delivery.


There were significant differences between the groups in subjective labor pain scores (except VAS 4) (P < 0.001). The duration of the Phase one (3 cm dilatation to full dilatation) and Phase two (full dilatation to birth) in the acupressure group was shorter than the control group (Phase one, 225 min and 320 min, respectively; Phase two, 15 min and 20 min, respectively; both P < 0.001).


It was determined that SP6 acupressure was effective in decreasing pain and duration of labor.


Acupressure; Acupuncture point; Labor; Labor Pain; Randomized Clinical Trial

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