It’s true that cancer patients go through a lot of hardships in their fight to beat the disease. However, a qualified massage therapist can help with treatment. In fact, massage therapy has been shown to reduce pain and increase the quality of life in these patients.
Research shows that massage can reduce pain, stress, nausea, depression, distress, anxiety and fatigue, while improving health-related quality of life for cancer patients.
A recent meta-analysis of nearly 600 cancer patients found massage therapy significantly reduced pain compared to the conventional standard-of-care alone, and was particularly effective in eradicating surgery-related pain.
Increasing Quality of Life
Research shows that massage therapy has the ability to reduce pain and increase the quality of day to day life.
A 2014 study of patients with acute myelogenous leukemia who received 50 minutes of Swedish massage three times per week for seven weeks, found all participants experienced stress reduction, increased comfort and relaxation, while also tracking health-related quality of life (HQoL) compared to a group of usual standard-of-care patients.
“Massage therapy can supply immense physical and psychological relief,” said Dr. Gabriel Lopez, Assistant Professor in the Department of Palliative, Rehabilitation and Integrative Medicine at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. “As evidenced by the wealth of positive research in the area, massage therapy has the potential to greatly improve quality of life for cancer patients and their caregivers.”