PCOS and Reflexology
Pilot Study Indicates that Reflexology has Effect On Women Suffering from Polycystic Ovaries (PCO) and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
By: Lone Victoria Schumann, Project Manager, Reflexologist
Between 20 and 25 per cent of all women in their reproductive age are suffering from PCO (Polycystic Ovaries). If PCO includes symptoms as menstrual irregularities, anovulation, infertility, acne and excess of facial and body hair (hirsutism), the woman has the diagnosis, PCOS. One out of seven women in the fertile age is suffering from PCOS. Reports have been submitted about clinical experience of reflexology treatment of PCOS. However the results of this pilot study were found by scientific methods. The project has been established in cooperation with the Triangle Fertility Clinic in Hellerup, Denmark, Mr. Jørgen Grinsted, Gynaecologist, MD DM Sci, founder of the clinic, and the Danish Reflexologists Association, FDZ, Ms. Lone Victoria Schumann, Project Manager and reflexologist, Frederiksberg, Denmark. The project was financially supported with DKK 100,000 by ViFAB, The Knowledge & Research Center for Alternative Medicine, in Aarhus, Denmark, and with DKK 30,000 by the E. Danielsen and Wife�s Foundation. Furthermore, the Danish Reflexologists Association (FDZ) has financially supported the project, to the making of the project description, by DKK 30,000.
Data and methods:
Eight women in the age between 24 to 34 years with PCO/PCOS and long cycles (33-90 days) participated in the pilot study in 2004-2005. It is a clinical trial. The Triangle Fertility Clinic has been in charge of statements, the gynaecological examinations, ultrasound scans, blood tests and medical observations. Blood test analysis was made by an external laboratory and the statistics were carried out by University of Odense, DK. The reflexological part of the project consisted of 19 treatments in 5-6 months. The treatments were carried out by three reflexologists.
Looking at the outcome measure, Bleeding pattern, the Length of Cycles is significantly showing an average fall of 14.81 days (p = 0,0379) - comparing the number of cycles days prior to treatment to the number of cycles days after the reflexology treatment. The analysis of the outcome measure Number of follicles in the ovaries shows a marginally significant average fall of 16.3 follicles (p = 0,0531). None of the variables of the other two outcome-measures, Hormone Values and Quality of Life shows statistical significant changes from before to after the treatment.
Conclusion:With eight participants one should not expect changes to be statistically significant, and more research is needed. Surprisingly the trial has shown that the changes in two of the primary outcome measures are significant. The fall in the Length of Cycles days is significant as well as the fall in the Number of Follicles, which is marginally significant. Furthermore the length of cycles and the number of follicles in the ovaries are used when making a diagnosis of PCO/PCOS, therefore the results are indeed so interesting that there is basis for creating a larger trial of the effect of reflexology treatment of women with the diagnosis PCO/PCOS.
Contact: Lone Victoria Schumann, Project Manager, Bentzonsvej 9, kl.th., DK-2000 Frederiksberg,
Figure 1: Development in average of Length of Cycles. Normal Ovary, Polycystic Ovary
At this stage the small follicles produce a larger amount of testosterone than normal.
Figure 2: Development in average of Number of Follicles