In the News

Dec2011CJONLetterToEditor  My letter to the editor for Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing. 

Found Compassion in Frustration    Interview that describes the positive and not quite positive realities of working within cancer centers as an oncology massage therapist for 14 years.

Using Palliative radiotherapy to relieve bone pain  “With increasing survival times among cancer patients, the management of metastatic bone tumors and their recurrence is an increasingly common challenge.”  One of my major concerns for long term survivors and their desire for deep tissue massage once cancer treatment is over.  Even years later, this is a concern.  Communicating with your client is critical to ensure a safe massage.

Dealing with Distress–  many of my clients report the same feelings and that massage does help them to overcome anxiety.  Even a temporary respite of anxious thoughts is beneficial.

Secondhand ChemoAn interesting article that will make every massage therapist decide whether to wear gloves or not.

Breast Cancer Survivors Battling Brittle Bones  A very good reason to not do deep work on cancer survivors.

Extra Weight-a Risk Factor for Lymphedema  

Caregiver information for Secondhand chemo– 

Work around: an indirect way to accomplish the same goal 

Ancient foot massage technique may ease cancer pain


Managing EGFR inhibitors – important must read to understand skin toxicities from cancer treatments.

Cardiac side effects from cancer treatment  Long and short term side effects of cancer treatment that massage therapists need to be aware of for massage modifications.

Childhood cancer survivors as greater risk for chronic health conditions  This article highlights the importance of good intake forms for massage therapists.  Long term survivorship issues due to cancer treatment in childhood increase the risk of health conditions, ranging from myocardial infarctions to joint replacements.  Our clients are “in our hands” and awareness is knowledge that we can pass on.

Helping to Relieve Pain of Post Mastectomy Patients with Myofascial and Craniosacral work    ” many physical therapists, osteopaths, massage therapists and other health professionals who have been practicing myofascial release and craniosacral therapy for decades claim strong success in achieving pain relief and range-of-motion recovery with both techniques.”   Always important to get a good intake form to know medicals, active edema or tumor sites.  Gentle therapies can make a difference for pain symptoms

Younger breast survivors report more stress    “These considerations suggest the need to take a more comprehensive and integrative perspective when considering the impact of breast cancer and its treatments on younger women,” the researchers wrote.  Suggestion for referrals  for appropriate help often come from an oncology massage therapist due to the relationship between a survivor and therapist.  Listening to concerns that might not be mentioned to their oncologist or primary care provider, we can be a guide to point survivors into appropriate care. 

New Data Emphasize Importance of Alert Patients Undergoing HCT of Long-Term Risks  As an oncology massage therapist I must be constantly aware of the long term side effects of cancer treatment.  Our relationship with our clients gives us a unique opportunity to notice physical changes and suggest mentioning those side effects to their physicians, whether it be their oncologist or PCP.  Not every condition after treatment is related to cancer treatment, but man times changes are ignored, assumptions are made, conditions are disregarded, or lived with.  Our connections with our clients help us with “survivorship issues.”

Chemo Brain” linked to neurological mechanism  Not just from chemotherapy but from possibly all cancer treatments and cognitive behavior therapy shows promise.

Primary Care Doctors not be aware of long term side effects of cancer treatment.   It is equally important for massage therapists that wish to work with cancer survivors to understand the symptoms of cancer treatment.

Integrative Care Options–  Article reports that patients with cancer must be aware of avoiding reflexology when feet or leges are swollen, experiencing leg pain.  Pressure should not be applied directly to tumor sites and deep pressure should be avoided when bones are fragile.  Always talk to your health care team if you have chronic conditions such as arthritis and heart disease. 

Calming  Effect: Mindfullness meditation can ease stress during cancer treatment  Actively working to understand the effects of stress on our bodies benefits both the Massage Therapist and their clients.


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