Background: Vaccination is one of the most common and painful methods of disease prevention that imposes stress on infants, and affects their parents, as well. Nurses are the main designers of nursing practices and one of their primary tasks is to play a supporting role in reducing pain during injections; so, they should be able to choose the most useful and safest methods of care. The present study, thus, aimed to determine the effect of foot reflexology massage on pain during vaccine injection in infants.
Methods: This study was a double-blind clinical trial. The study population included 90 healthy infants aged 2-7 months who were brought by their parents to one of the comprehensive health centers of Rasht (Guilan province, Iran) for pentavalent vaccine injection. The infants were randomly divided into three groups: foot reflexology massage, neutral point massage (sham group) and control. Data collection instruments included a demographic information form and the Face, Legs, Activity, Cry, and Consolability scale (FLACC). Data were analyzed using Chi-square, ANOVA, independent t-test and repeated measures ANOVA in SPSS ver. 22.
Results: There was no significant difference between the three groups in terms of pre-vaccination pain level. Means ± standard deviations of pain during vaccine injections in the intervention, sham, and control groups were 4.83 ± 1.08, 7.96 ± 0.99, and 8.40 ± 1.13, respectively, which were significantly different (p<0.001).
Conclusion: Foot reflexology massage can reduce the pain during pentavalent injection in infants and can be used as a simple and accessible non-pharmacological method to manage vaccination pain in infants.