The global incidence of cancer has increased over the past decades. Likewise, the survival of the oncological patients has increased, both in the cure raytes and in the prolongation of the survival.
As a part of the process in order to improve the life quality the oncological patients turned their attention to the complementary medicine (estimated between 40-80% in some countries)
The oncological massage is introduced as a new activity of the Complementary Medicine department of the HC Marbella International Hospital. This type of massage has been carried out for years in prestigious hospitals worldwide such as the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York or the Royal Marsden in London.
Oncological massage is a kind of gentle massage, in which the pressure, the position of the patient and the direction of the massage trace are adapted according to the clinical history to achieve maximum comfort, avoiding any potential damage.
The massage helps improve the side effects of treatment and the disease itself, such as:
Pain, anxiety, tiredness, depression or nausea.
The increase of NK, a type of immune system cell essential in the fight against cancer also seems to increase after oncological massage according to different scientific articles.
The study “Massage therapy for symptom control: outcome study at a major cancer center” by Cassileth BR. et al, carried out for 3 years in the Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, with 1290 treated patients, obtained the following results: 47% improvement in pain levels, 42% improvement in fatigue levels, 59% improvement in anxiety levels, 51% improvement in nausea, 48% improvement in depression.
Some studies suggest that aromatherapy can help enhance the effect of massage.
– In the systematic review by Fellowes D et al: “Aromatherapy and massage to relieve symptoms in patients with cancer” 10 articles that met the inclusion criteria were reviewed and the most consistently found effect was the improvement of anxiety.
– In the article by Wilkinson SM et al: “Efficacy of aromatherapy massage in the management of anxiety and depression in patients with cancer: a multicentre randomized controlled trial”, the impact of 288 cancer patients was evaluated by the National Health Service (NHS) referred to complementary therapy services with clinical anxiety and / or depression. Patients received 1 hour of weekly session of aromatherapy massage for 4 weeks, using 20 essential oils.
The results showed that patients who received aromatherapy massage experienced a significant improvement in anxiety and depression at 2 weeks after the intervention and this was maintained up to 6 weeks after the intervention.
The massage experience combined with natural fragrances, provided by essential oils, will transport us to a state of maximum relaxation.
Margarita De Miguel
Integrative Medicine at HC Marbella
July 3, 2018
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