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Comparison of the Effects of Valerian Extract and Diazepam on Anxiety Before Orthopedic Surgery

Introduction: anxiety can hamper wound healing and tissue repair, and spending inordinate mental and physical energy during prolonged stress can cause hospitalization and delayed discharge. One method for reducing anxiety is the use of medicinal plants; herein, we aimed to compare the effects of valerian extract and diazepam on anxiety before orthopedic surgery.

Materials and Methods: In this double-blind clinical trial, 60 patients aged 15-60 years, who were referred to Imam Ali Hospital of Bojnord, Iran, were recruited and randomly divided into two groups of 30. At 21 pm before surgery, the valerian group received 10 drops of valerian edible oil and the diazepam group received diazepam (5 mg) dissolved in 50 ml of tap water. The Spielberger questionnaire was used to assess anxiety before the intervention and one hour before initiation of surgery. Data was analyzed using statistical tests.

Results: In the valerian group, 83.8% were male and 16.7% were female,while the diazepam group included 23.3% males and 76.7% females. The mean scores of overt and covert anxiety in the valerian and diazepam groups were 10.1±1.0, 12.4±1.3, 9.3±1.1, and 10.7±.03, respectively. Comparison of the twogroups showed no significant differences (P=0.60, P=0.22, respectively).

Conclusion: Valerian could attenuate anxiety and can be used as a substitute for pharmacological medications; however, performing further studies is required to confirm these results.