Potential beneficial effects of foot bathing on cardiac rhythm

Duygu Aydin, Siti Sugih Hartiningsih, Melike Gokce Izgi, Sevgi Bay, Kubra Unlu, Meryem Ozlem Tatar, Ayse Melike Alparslan, Mohammed Ozeri, Senol Dane

Abstract


Purpose: Foot bathing therapy is a simple technique that induces sensations of comfort and relaxation. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of foot bathing therapy on heart rate variability (HRV) parameters in a healthy population.

Methods: Participants were twenty healthy female subjects (median age=20.67 years, SD=1.04). The recording ECG was applied for 5 minutes before and for 5 minutes after foot bathing therapy of 10 minutes. Subjects rested for 10 minutes without recording ECG in order to stabilize autonomic parameters. The digital signals were then transferred to a laptop and analyzed using LabChart® software (MLS310/7 HRV Module).

Results: Almost all HRV parameters increased and heart (pulse) rate and LF/HF ratio decreased after foot bathing therapy compared with before foot bathing therapy.

Conclusions: These results indicate for the first time in humans that foot bathing might induce a state of balance between sympathetic and parasympathetic systems and might be helpful to prevent possible cardiac arrhythmias.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.25011/cim.v39i6.27501

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