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Wristband Uses Acupressure to Prevent Nausea.

SAN DIEGO -- Acupressure applied by a specially designed wristband is significantly more effective than placebo in preventing postle paoscopy nausea and vomiting, Dr. Robert Harrison said at the annual meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

In a study of 102 patients, the incidence of nausea and vomiting in the first 24 hours after the procedure was 19% in those wearing the acupressure band and 42% in those wearing a band that did not deliver acupressure.

"I was skeptical, but I have to say that they really do work," said study investigator Dr. Harrison, who performs about 15 laparoscopies per week. "The efficacy of antiemetics is poor, and the side effects are high. This wristband is a safe and economical alternative.

The band's mechanism of action is unclear, but the acu-pressure is thought to trigger the release of endorphins, said Dr. Harrison of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin, Ireland.

The wristband used in the study, which is known as SeaBand, operates by applying pressure on the P6 acupressure point using a plastic stud. This point is located between the tendons of the extensor carpi adialis and the palmaris longus.

The bands, which are manufactured by Sea-Band International, have also been found to help prevent nausea and vomiting in travel, pregnancy, and chemotherapy They cost about $5 each and are widely available inmost U.S. pharmacies and in many discount stores.

The study participants, mean age was 32, underwent diagnostic laparoscopy and wore a Sea-Band on their right forearm before induction of anesthesia. The women were randomized to wear the band with the plastic stud positioned either on the P6 acupressure point or not on the point, said Dr. Harrison, who said he has no financial interest in the bands.

All patients had received 10 mg diazepam 1 hour before the laparoscopy At the end of the procedure, patients received 100 mg diclofenac rectally.

The incidence of nausea and vomiting during the first 24 hours after laparoscopy was determined at three time intervals by blinded observers in the postoperative inpatient ward of the hospital.

Of the 52 patients in the acupressure group, 10 (19%) had nausea and vomiting in the first 24 hours after the operation, compared with 22 (42%) of the 52 controls. No side effects were reported from use of the SeaBand, said Dr. Harrison, president of the International Federation of Fertility Societies.
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Publication:OB GYN News
Date:Jan 15, 2001
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