Introduction: Depression and anxiety are the most common psychological problems before and after surgery. Aromatherapy is a rapidly growing treatment in recent years compared to other complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) for anxiety. This study investigated the effects of inhalation of lavender extract on physical and mental health of candidates for coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery.
Material and Methods: This randomized controlled study was conducted on 60 patients undergoing CABG at Artesh Jomhory Eslami (AJA) Medical University Hospital in Iran. Patients meeting the specific requirements were selected and placed in two groups: the control group breathing room air and the experimental group breathing cotton with two drops of lavender essential oil. This intervention is done on the morning of the surgery. To assess these parameters, patients completed the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS) questionnaire before and after the intervention. The collected data were analyzed with descriptive and statistical analysis
Results: After intervention, study results showed a difference in heart rate between the two study groups (mean = 78.83, P = 0.02) and stress level (mean = 6.63, P = 0.02). However, the difference in anxiety between the two groups was not significant (mean = 8.63, P = 0.55) and other physical changes.
Conclusion: Aromatherapy inhalation is an effective method to reduce heart rate and anxiety in pre-CABG patients. Considering that the physical and mental health of patients is the primary responsibility of nurses, aromatherapy can be considered as a safe and effective way of relaxation before intervention. It is recommended that students and nurses study this model.