Journal List > Korean J Women Health Nurs > v.17(3) > 1037275

Lee and Hur: Effects of the Spouse's Aromatherapy Massage on Labor Pain, Anxiety and Childbirth Satisfaction for Laboring Women



The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of the spouse's aromatherapy massage on labor pain, anxiety during labor and childbirth satisfaction for laboring women.


The subjects of this study were laboring women who didn't have any complication during pregnancy and who have admitted for childbirth with their spouse to E. hospital in D city. This study was carried out from June to November in 2007. The subjects were allocated into three groups: spouse's aromatherapy massage group, spouse's carrier oil massage group and control group. Aromatherapy massage and carrier oil massage was applied for ten minutes every hour after the cervix dilated 5cm. The subjects in the control group were with their spouse during labor.


The labor pain by VAS was significantly different among the three groups (Kruskal-Wallis χ2=7.09 p=.029) in the deceleration phase. The anxiety during labor by VAS were significantly different among the three groups (Kruskal-Wallis χ2=6.77 p=.034) in the deceleration phase. There was no significant difference in childbirth satisfaction among the three groups.


The spouse's aromatherapy massage using Lavender, Clary sage, Frankincense and Neroli could be effective in decreasing labor pain and decreasing anxiety level during labor.

Figures and Tables

Figure 1
Research design.
Table 1
Homogeneity Test for General Characteristics among Three Groups (N=71)

Exp.=experimental group; Pla.=placebo group; Cont.=control group.

Fisher's exact test.

Table 2
Homogeneity Test for Obstetric Characteristics among Three Groups (N=71)

Exp.=experimental group; Pla.=placebo group; Cont.=control group.

Table 3
Comparison of Pain Score in the First Stage of Labor (N=71)
Table 4
Comparison of Anxiety Score in the First Stage of Labor (N=71)


1. Cha J.H. Effects of aromatherapy on headache, anxiety and serum cortisol level in the middle-aged women. 2005. Seoul: The Catholic University of Korea;Unpublished doctoral dissertation.
2. Chae J.H., Son S.K., Chung S.W., Lee R.R., Park H.C., Wang J.S., et al. The clinical significance of obstetric epidural anesthesia. Korean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 1998. 41(6):1709–1714.
3. Cho M.Y. Primiparas' perceptions of their delivery experience and their maternal-infant interaction: Compared according to delivery method. The Journal of Nurses Academic Society. 1990. 20(2):153–173.
4. Cho S.H. The effects of aroma hand massage on stress response in hospitalized elderly patients. 2005. Busan: Kosin University;Unpublished doctoral dissertation.
5. Hur M.H., Park M.H. Effects of aromatherapy on labor process, labor pain, labor stress response and neonatal status of primipara: Randomized clinical trial. Korean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2003. 46(4):776–783.
6. Hur M.H., Oh H.Y., Park Y.S. Effects of aromatherapy on labor pain and perception of childbirth experience. Korean Journal of Women Health Nursing. 2005. 11(2):135–141.
7. Hur K.M. The effectiveness of aromatherapy for the anxiety and labor pain in primipara. 2003. Seoul: The Catholic University of Korea;Unpublished master's thesis.
8. Jo M.H., Kim I.S., Cho Y.L. Continuos epidural analgesia for labor and delivery. Korean Journal of Anesthesiology. 1981. 14(4):437–442.
9. Jung H.J. Effects of aroma oil massage on labor pain, anxiety, and childbirth experience perception of primiparas. 2004. Seoul: Ewha Womans University;Unpublished master's thesis.
10. Jung S.O. The effects of a qigong training program on the anxiety and labor pain of primipara. 2005. Daegu: Keimyung University;Unpublished master's thesis.
11. Kang J.Y., Kim K.S. Effect of aromatherapy on anxiety and fatigue in students nurses experiencing their first clinical practice. Journal of Korean Academy of Fundamentals of Nursing. 2002. 9(2):226–236.
12. Kim G.J. The effects of aroma massage on contraction of uterus, duration of delivery time, stress, anxiety and pain during delivery. 2004. Seoul: Hanyang University;Unpublished doctoral dissertation.
13. Kim J.T., Shin D.K. A study based on the standardization of the STAI for Korea. New Medical Journal. 1978. 21(11):65–75.
14. Kim M.H. The effects of aroma foot massage on the anxiety and pain during colonoscopy with conscious sedation. 2006. Daegu: Catholic University of Daegu.
15. Kim O.J. The effect of aroma inhalation method on stress, anxiety and sleep pattern in patients undergoing hemodialysis. 2007. Seoul: Chung-Ang University;Unpublished master's thesis.
16. Kim Y.J. Effects of aromatherapy on the menstrual pain and anxiety during menstruation for nurses. 2007. Daejeon: Eulji University;Unpublished master's thesis.
17. Koh H.J., Sibley V. Aromatherapy outline. 2004. Hwaseong: Haeran.
18. Koh H.J. Review on the emotional effect aromatherapy. Korean Journal of Aesthetic Society. 2006. 4(2):129–141.
19. Lee Y.H. What is aromatherapy. Occupational Health. 2003. 180:43–46.
20. Lee Y.K., Koong M.K., Kim M.Y., Kang S.M. Pain relief in labor by transcutaneous nerve stimulation. Korean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 1986. 29(6):804–812.
21. Marut J.S., Mercer R.T. Comparison of primipara's perceptions of vaginal and cesarean births. Nursing Research. 1979. 28(5):260–266.
22. Oh J.H., Lee H.J., Kim Y.K., Min J., Park K.O. The effect of childbirth education and family participated delivery in a labor-delivery-recovery room on primiparas' anxiety, labor pain and perception of childbirth experience. Journal of Korean Clinical Nursing Research. 2006. 12(2):145–156.
23. Park H.S., Yang S.Y., Yoon S.H., Son S.C. Comparison between epidural analgesia and combined spinalepidural analgesia for labor and delivery. Korean Journal of Anesthesiology. 2001. 41(6):699–706.
24. Park I.S., Kim Y.C., Park H.M., Kim S.K., Kang D.W., Song S.J. The effect of epidural anesthesia on labor. Korean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 1982. 25(2):149–156.
25. Price S., Price L. Aromatherapy for health professionals. 1999. New York: Churchill Livingstone.
26. Shin H.S. Subjectivity of the delivery experience. Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing. 2000. 30(2):307–318.
27. Simkin P. Commentary: The meaning of labor pain. Birth. 2000. 27(4):254–255.
28. Spielberger C.D. Anxiety: Current trends in theory and research. 1972. New York: Academic Press.
29. Waldenström U., Hildingsson I., Rubertsson C., Rådestad I. Women's worries during pregnancy: Testing the Cambridge Worry Scale on 200 Swedish women. Birth. 2004. 31(1):17–27.
Similar articles