Research: YIP and TSE, School of Nursing

Listed in Issue 136


YIP and TSE, School of Nursing, Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Hong Kong, PR China,, have carried out a study of acupressure with lavender essential oil for neck pain.      


The aim of the study was to assess the efficacy of acupressure using an aromatic essential oil (lavender) as an add-on treatment for pain relief and enhancing physical function among adults with sub-acute non-specific neck pain.


In this experimental study design, a course of 8 sessions of manual acupressure with lavender oil over a 3 week period was given to patients. Changes from baseline to the end of treatment were assessed on neck pain intensity; stiffness level; stress level; neck lateral flexion, forward flexion and extension in cm, and interference with daily activities.


The baseline pain intensities for the intervention and control groups were 5.12 and 4.91 out of 10, respectively. One month after the end of treatment, the manual acupressure group had 23% reduced pain intensity compared to the control group, (p = 0.02), 23% reduced neck stiffness (p = 0.001), 39% reduced stress level (p = 0.0001), improved neck flexion (p = 0.02), neck lateral flexion (p = 0.02), and neck extension (p = 0.01). However, improvements in functional disability level were found in both the manual acupressure group and control group.


These results show that eight sessions of acupressure with aromatic lavender oil were an effective method for short-term neck pain relief.


Yip YB, Tse SH. An experimental study on the effectiveness of acupressure with aromatic lavender essential oil for sub-acute, non-specific neck pain in Hong Kong. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice 12 (1): 18-26, Feb 2006.

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