This months issues of The Burnham Review focus on decreasing signs and symptoms associated with Breast Cancer and with Low Back pain. There is also support for the idea that manual therapy approaches can improve tissue health and contribute to recovery and quality of life.
The use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) by patients with breast cancer and survivors is on the rise. A recent study of 115 breast cancer survivors at least 1 year beyond active medical treatment found that 69% of participants reported use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). "Of CAM users, 73% reported initiating or changing CAM activity specifically because of their cancer diagnosis. Patients engaging in CAM for cancer-related reasons were younger and had been diagnosed with cancer at a younger age."
Manual Therapies are being used to decrease nausea and fatigue as well as support the immune system in people with cancer.
There were two particularly encouraging articles:
1.Hernandez-Reif, M., G. Ironson, et al. (2004). "Breast cancer patients have improved immune and neuroendocrine functions following massage therapy." J Psychosom Res 57(1): 45-52. [Abstract]
2. Potter, B. (2000). "Shrinkage of Ductal Carcinoma Tumor Prior to Operation." Center for Integrative Manual Therapy e-journal: