Author(s): Im H, Kim E
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Touching, one of the most developed senses, is proven to relax preterm infants. Yakson is a Korean touching method for healing and relaxation similar to Gentle Human Touch (GHT), which is used in the United States. OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to test the effect of Yakson and GHT on preterm infants' stress and behaviors compared to usual nursing care. DESIGN: A quasi-experimental study design was used. PARTICIPANTS: Fifty-nine preterm infants (26-34 weeks gestational age) in the neonatal intensive care unit were chronologically assigned into three groups; Yakson (n=20), GHT (n=20), and control group (n=19). METHODS: The Yakson and GHT groups each received an intervention for 15min twice a day for 15 days while the control group received usual nursing care. Yakson consists of three five-minute phases: resting the hand on the infant, gentle caressing, and resting the hand again. GHT consists of hand resting for 15min. Twenty-four-hour urine cortisol and norepinephrine samples were collected both before and after the 15-day intervention period. The infants' sleep and awake states were observed before, during, and after each intervention. RESULTS: Following the intervention period, preterm infants in the Yakson and GHT groups had significantly lower stress hormone levels compared to the control group preterm infants. No significant difference was found in stress hormone levels between Yakson and GHT group preterm infants. After Yakson or GHT, the infants exhibited an increased percentage of sleep states and a decreased percentage of awake and fussy states. CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest that Yakson is another touching method that is not aversive or stressful to preterm infants, and which may provide several positive effects on preterm infants.
This article was published in Int J Nurs Stud
and referenced in Journal of Neonatal Biology