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Original Article

J Korean Gerontol Nurs. 2014 Dec;16(3):181-188. Korean.
Published online Dec 31, 2014.  http://dx.doi.org/10.17079/jkgn.2014.16.3.181
© 2014 Korean Gerontological Nursing Society
Effects of Mugwort Abdominal Heat and Acupressure Therapy on Constipation in Community-dwelling Older Adults
Jia Lee*
College of Nursing Science, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea.

*Corresponding author: Lee, Jia. College of Nursing Science, Kyung Hee University, 1 Hoegi-dong, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 130-701, Korea. Tel: +82-2-961-0894, Fax: +82-2-961-9398, Email: leejia@khu.ac.kr
Received June 17, 2014; Revised July 19, 2014; Accepted August 13, 2014.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.



The purpose of this study was to examine effects of mugwort heat therapy on constipation in community-dwelling older adults.


In this study, a non-equivalent control group pre-posttest design was used. Data were collected from May 20 to September 30, 2011. Participants were 86 community-dwelling older adults (experimental group=42, control group=44) with constipation residing in two senior citizen centers. For two weeks, a nurse qualified in oriental medicine nursing applied mugwort heat therapy on Chun-Chu (ST25) and Kwan-Won (CV4) areas in the experimental group for 40 minutes per day including stimulation to ST25 and CV4. The control group maintained their usual lifestyle including fiber diet and hydration. Outcome variables were number of defecations per week, difficulty during defecation, stool strength and discomfort from constipation.


The experimental group showed significant improvement in defecation count, stool strength and discomfort from constipation. Difficulty during defecation in the experimental group decreased during the intervention but the decrease was not significant.


Results indicate that mugwort heat therapy on ST25 and CV4 areas is a safe method to decrease constipation in community-dwelling older adults. Thus, nurses should consider developing and providing various non-pharmacological therapies for community-dwelling older adults to promote their health.

Keywords: Constipation, Complementary therapies, Elderly.


Figure 1
Location of Acupoints.


Table 1
Homogeneity Test of General Characteristics (N=86)

Table 2
Homogeneity Test of Dependent Variables (N=86)

Table 3
Mean Differences of Dependent Variables (N=86)


This research was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea(NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education(No. NRF-2013R1A1A2064756).

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