Effect of acupressure on thirst in hemodialysis patients.
Kidney Blood Press Res. 2010;33(4):260-5. Epub 2010 Jul 2. PMID: 20606475
School of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, ROC.
BACKGROUND: Thirst and dry mouth are common among hemodialysis (HD) patients. This paper reports a study to evaluate the impact of an acupressure program on HD patients' thirst and salivary flow rates. METHODS: The acupressure program included placebo, followed by true acupressure each applied for 4 weeks. Twenty-eight patients (mean age 57.6, SD = 16.13 years) first received a sticker as placebo acupressure at two acupoints CV23 and TE17 three times a week for 4 weeks, and then received true acupressure in the same area for the next 4 weeks. Salivary flow rate and thirst intensity were measured at baseline, during and after treatment completion for both the placebo and true acupressure program. RESULTS: The true acupressure program was associated with significantly increased salivary flow rate (0.09 +/- 0.08 ml/min at baseline to 0.12 +/- 0.08 ml/min after treatments completion, p = 0.04). The mean thirst intensity also improved from 4.21 +/- 2.66 at baseline to 2.43 +/- 2.32 (p = 0.008) after treatment completion in HD patients. There was no statistically significant difference in pre-post program salivary flow rate; however, significant improvement in thirst intensity scores was observed (p = 0.009) in the placebo acupressure program. CONCLUSION: This study provides preliminary evidence that acupressure may be effective in improving salivary flow rates and thirst intensity.