Promoting the Use of Aromatherapy to Decrease Anxiety and Patient Perception of Pain During a Gynecologic Procedure: An Integrative Interprofessional Therapy Quality Improvement Intervention

Tuesday, August 20, 2019, 9:45 am - 11:15 am
Hyatt Northstar Ballroom
Theme: Optimizing the Interprofessional Clinical Learning Environment

The purpose of this quality improvement (QI) project is to implement a system for clinic staff and providers to promote, support, and document the use of lavender aromatherapy to reduce anxiety and pain perception, as an option for patients experiencing an intrauterine device (IUD) insertion. Despite the safety, economic benefit, and proven effectiveness of essential oils, there remains a practice gap in consistently offering it as an integrative option in the healthcare setting.

Interprofessional collaboration among staff members at a gynecology clinic led to the development of five evidence-based interventions to improve the delivery of health care by providing patients with an integrative option to help reduce anxiety and perception of pain during IUD insertions. The interprofessional team included medical doctors, advanced practice registered nurses, nurses, members of the integrative health department, and individuals from the quality improvement team. Medical staff brought forth the interest in offering alternative options to patients during IUD insertions to help reduce anxiety and pain perception. In collaboration with the integrative health department, lavender was selected as the essential oil of choice for this QI project.

Members from the quality improvement team offered suggestions and evaluated the QI project plans to ensure standards were being met. The decided interventions focus on improving staff and patient knowledge regarding the use and benefits of lavender aromatherapy during gynecologic procedures. Integrative care with the use of aromatherapy offers more solutions and promotes patient inclusiveness. Additionally, accessibility of lavender essential oil at point of care has been improved, guidelines for documentation have been created, and site leads have been identified. Electronic health record documentation will be reviewed to determine the number of patients that utilized lavender aromatherapy during IUD insertions and to assess the patient’s self-reported anxiety and perception of pain in response to the lavender aromatherapy.

After poster review, participants will be able to identify the role of interprofessional teams in the implementation of lavender aromatherapy into practice. This QI project is in progress with the implementation phase ending in July 2019. The data analysis will be completed by August 2019. No funding was allocated to this project.