(HealthDay News) — For patients with functional constipation, perineal self-acupressure is associated with improved quality of life and bowel function, according to a study published online Nov. 10 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Ryan Abbott, M.D., J.D., from the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California in Los Angeles, and colleagues conducted a randomized parallel group trial to examine the efficacy of perineal self-acupressure for treating constipation. Participants included 100 adult patients who met Rome III criteria for functional constipation and who received information about standard constipation treatment options (control group) or received training in perineal self-acupressure plus standard treatment options (intervention group).

The researchers found that the mean Patient Assessment of Constipation Quality of Life was improved by 0.76 and 0.17 in the treatment and control groups, respectively (treatment-effect difference, 0.59; P < 0.01). There were improvements of 18.1 and 4.2 in the mean modified Bowel Function Index in the treatment and control groups, respectively (treatment-effect difference, 13.8; P < 0.01). There were treatment effects in the mean Short Form-12 (SF-12v2) Physical Component Score (treatment-effect difference, 3.05; P < 0.01) and the mean SF-12v2 Mental Component Score (treatment-effect difference, 2.82; P < 0.07).

“Perineal self-acupressure improves self-reported assessments of quality of life, bowel function, and health and well-being relative to providing standard constipation treatment options alone,” the authors write.

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