Click below for examples of research in these areas
The oldest documentation that could be interpreted as depicting reflexology is found in Egypt, dating back to 2500 BCE. Despite the therapy having roots in the east, the more recent science based history according to Christine Issel, author of, "Reflexology: Art, Science & History", actually derives from the west & includes pioneering work by medical doctors, knighted physicians, & Nobel prize winners.
There are many valid models of research, with treatments that fall outside of mainstream healthcare relying more heavily on social, qualitative & quantitative methods. Scientific research is more difficult to conduct with humans, who are constantly influenced by environmental factors which impact outcomes. Replicating & repeating a reflexology experiment under the same controlled conditions as an original study is therefore problematic, but not impossible & fabulous headway has been made. Reflexology has been used by society for thousands of years giving it a good basis for validity. As new knowledge is uncovered, as with therapies like Acupuncture, methods to prove its efficacy will constantly change & be revised.
History & Science
Source: Reflexology: Art, Science & History, Christine Issel.