As always, seek professional advice before using any of the methods listed.
This is an Alternative Medicine, which uses the application of pressure to the feet and hands via specific thumb, finger, and hand techniques without the use of oil or lotion.
It is based on a collection of "zones" and "reflex areas" that reflect an image of the body on the feet and hands, with the premise that such work effects a physical change to the body.
A 2009 systematic review of randomised controlled trialsconcluded: "The best evidence available to date does not demonstrate convincingly that reflexology is an effective treatment for any medical condition."
There is no consensus among reflexologists on how reflexology is supposed to work; a unifying theme is the idea that areas on the foot correspond to areas of the body, and that by manipulating these one can improve health through one's Qi, (aka, "natural energy", "life force", or "energy flow".
Reflexologists divide the body into ten equal vertical zones, five on the right and five on the left. Concerns have been raised by medical professionals that treating potentially serious illnesses with reflexology, which has no proven efficacy, could delay the seeking of appropriate medical treatment.