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Clinical and Experimental Obstetrics & Gynecology  2021, Vol. 48 Issue (1): 110-116    DOI: 10.31083/j.ceog.2021.01.2116
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Immersive virtual reality analgesia in un-medicated laboring women (during stage 1 and 2): a randomized controlled trial
Narges Momenyan1, Ali Asghar Safaei1, *(), Sedighe Hantoushzadeh2
1Department of Medical Informatics, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University, 14115-143 Tehran, Iran
2Vali-e-Asr Reproductive Health Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, 14155-6559 Tehran, Iran
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Introduction: In order to manage labor pain, one of the non-pharmacological approaches is immersive virtual reality (VR). This study aimed to evaluate the impact of immersive VR analgesia on labor pain, anxiety and nausea in nulliparous women. Methods: In this interventional study, 52 nulliparous women with a single fetus who expected vaginal delivery were randomly assigned to a VR group (n = 26) and a control group (n = 26). 4 women excluded from the study due to the desire for medical intervention for pain control. A simulated environment (containing nature scenes and sounds) was presented to the women in the VR group. Pain intensity, anxiety, and nausea were measured using a questionnaire. The two groups were compared in terms of cognitive pain, sensory pain, affective pain, anxiety, and nausea. Results: There was a statically significant decrease of cognitive pain during the first stage of labor in the VR intervention group compared to the control group (P = 0.013), whereas in the second stage of labor it was not significant (P = 0.55). There was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of affective pain. Also, sensory pain was significantly decreased only in the first stage of labor in the VR group compared to the control group (P = 0.033). Mothers in the intervention group had a lower level of anxiety compared with those in the control group (P < 0.05), whereas nausea was not significantly different between the two groups (P < 0.05) at all stages of labor. Conclusion: Virtual reality is an effective and feasible non-pharmacological method to reduce pain and anxiety during labor process without major side effects.
Key words:  Virtual reality      Labor pain      Nulliparous women      Randomized controlled trial     
Submitted:  15 April 2020      Revised:  27 July 2020      Accepted:  29 July 2020      Published:  15 February 2021     
*Corresponding Author(s):  Ali Asghar Safaei     E-mail:

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Narges Momenyan, Ali Asghar Safaei, Sedighe Hantoushzadeh. Immersive virtual reality analgesia in un-medicated laboring women (during stage 1 and 2): a randomized controlled trial. Clinical and Experimental Obstetrics & Gynecology, 2021, 48(1): 110-116.

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