Women's experiences of acupuncture during labour 

Martina Gisin, Angela Poat, Katharina Fierz , Irena Anna Frei 
British Journal of Midwifery, Vol. 21, Iss. 4, 04 Apr 2013, pp


This study explores the experiences of women treated with acupuncture during labour, to identify factors relevant to midwifery care. An exploratory qualitative approach was used. Seven healthy women who had been treated with acupuncture during normal labour in a maternity unit of a tertiary hospital in Switzerland participated in semi-structured interviews in the first postnatal month. Qualitative data was analysed using thematic analysis. Women treated with acupuncture during labour reported enhanced birthing experiences and satisfaction with regard to pain relief and positive progress in labour, suggesting that acupuncture could be considered an additional support for women during childbirth. This suggests that midwives should discuss acupuncture with women during the antenatal period and offer it as an option during labour. The findings provide a better understanding of this topic by midwives and other health professionals, and contribute to the further development of acupuncture practice during labour.



The use of complementary therapies in maternity services: A survey 

Mary Mitchell, Julie Williams, Emily Hobbs, Katherine Pollard 
British Journal of Midwifery, Vol. 14, Iss. 10, 05 Oct 2006, pp 576 - 582


The aim of this study was to establish the extent of use of complementary therapies in the maternity services in England and to determine the views of heads of midwifery to the integration of these therapies into midwifery practice. The questionnaire was sent to 221 heads of midwifery in all NHS maternity units in England. A response rate of 75% was achieved. Sixty four percent of the maternity units who responded provided a complementary therapy service in a variety of combinations to mothers, babies and staff. However, only 9% provided a service to all three groups. The four therapies offered most widely were massage, aromatherapy, reflexology and acupuncture. Attitudes were positive with 70% of respondents convinced of the benefits and 94% believing it important for them to be available in the NHS. Respondents felt that complementary therapies had an important role, particularly in relation to increasing consumer satisfaction, promoting normal childbirth, decreasing medical intervention and increasing midwives’ job satisfaction.