Previous investigators have suggested that the effects of therapeutic touch are the result of an energy exchange between the client and the nurse. In this investigation, the theory of energy exchange is viewed as part of the broader conceptual system proposed by Rogers. The theorem that the effects of therapeutic touch do not depend on actual physical contact is derived, tested, and supported via an experimental pretest-posttest design. Subjects treated with noncontract therapeutic touch demonstrated a significantly greater decrease in state anxiety than subjects treated with a mimic control intervention. Implications for further theory development are presented.
© 1984 Aspen Publishers, Inc.