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Table 2 Data from a qualitative interview conducted in a research project on headache and reflexology treatment.

From: Evaluating complex health interventions: a critical analysis of the 'outcomes' concept

"When the headaches started to disappear I told myself to calm down, because I expected them to return quickly – I actually did. But I just kept getting better....it was like being reborn....I had been spending a lot of time feeling unwell – time I should have spent with my family. It was really like being back in business. I actually think that it was my own mental process that made a change". In addition, the reflexologist has helped Sussi to get rid of her heartburn and bloated stomach – a problem that had previously required a lot of medicine – and has taught Sussi to press a key point in her ear if she got a bloated stomach. Sussi believes that the reflexology has also reduced her colds and sore throats, which had been frequent problems since childhood, and she no longer needed to use penicillin.
After the fifth treatment Sussi started to cut down a lot on her coffee intake: she says that her body now tells her what is good and what is bad for her. Whereas Sussi started with the feeling that the headaches were something she wanted to rip out, she now understands her headaches in another way and has a holistic understanding of her body.
1. Brendstrup E, Launsø L. Headache and reflexological treatment. Copenhagen: The Council Concerning Alternative Treatment, National Board of Health; 1997.
  1. The client was diagnosed by a medical specialist as having migraine at the start of the treatment project [1]