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Title: A randomized controlled trial examining the effect of acupressure on agitation and salivary cortisol in nursing home residents with dementia
Authors: Kwan, RYC 
Leung, MCP 
Lai, CKY 
Keywords: Acupressure
Salivary cortisol
Nursing home
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Karger
Source: Dementia and geriatric cognitive disorders, 2017, v. 44, no. 1-2, p. 92-104 How to cite?
Journal: Dementia and geriatric cognitive disorders 
Abstract: Background: Acupressure has been used to manage agitation in people with dementia because it is safe and inexpensive. However, its effect on agitation and at the biochemical level is uncertain. Methods: This randomized controlled trial examined the effect of acupressure on agitation, as measured by the Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI); and on salivary cortisol, as measured at baseline (T0) and in the 3rd (T1), 5th (T2), and 8th (T3) weeks. There were 119 agitated residents with dementia randomized into 3 groups: acupressure (n = 39), sham (n = 41), and usual-care group (n = 39). Results: A downward trend in agitation over time was noted in the acupressure group, which almost reached a level of significance in interaction effects between groups and time points (p = 0.052). Post hoc pair wise tests in the acupressure group showed that acupressure significantly reduced agitation at T2 (mean difference -6.84, 95% CI -10.60, -3.08) compared to baseline. Significant interaction effects between groups and time points were observed on the level of salivary cortisol (p = 0.022). Conclusion: Acupressure is a multicomponent intervention that can reduce agitation. Acupoint activation may not be a significant component in reducing agitation, although this result may have been limited by the inadequate sample size. Acupressure is effective in reducing salivary cortisol in people with dementia.
ISSN: 1420-8008
EISSN: 1421-9824
DOI: 10.1159/000478739
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