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News in Brief
National Chiropractic Health Month: Be Proactive; Collegiate Roundup: Academic Appointments at Parker, Logan.
Don't Turn a 2 Into a 10
The Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale1 is so useful because it can be used by almost anyone. Patients can use the numbers associated with the faces depicted on the scale or select the face that demonstrates their current level of pain from 0-10.
9 Common Causes of Thyroid Imbalance and How You Can Help
How you sleep, how easily you wake up, and how much energy and stamina you have during the day are directly related to levels of the thyroid hormones.
Chiropractic Research in Review
Chiropractic Treatment of Lateral Epicondylitis; Cost / Benefit Analysis: Different Doses of SMT for Low Back Pain; Imaging for Occult Rib and Costal Cartilage Fractures; Treating Neck Pain: Thoracic Thrust Manipulation vs. Non-Thrust Mobilization.
CCE Finally Takes a "Baby Step" Toward Reform
During a 16-month period from October 2010 to February 2012, I devoted four separate columns to the heavy-handed attempt by the Council on Chiropractic Education to radically change the chiropractic profession through the accreditation process.
Why Young People Need Chiropractic Now More Than Ever
According to a recent study published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, "It is now widely acknowledged that neck pain (NP), mid back pain (MBP), and low back pain (LBP) (spinal pain) start early in life and that the lifetime prevalence increases rapidly during adolescence to reach adult levels at the age of 18."
A Vibrating Capsule for Constipation? Relevance to Your Chiropractic Practice
The relationship between gastrointestinal (GI) complaints and back pain is not typically written about or discussed.
MPA Media Wins 7 Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Dynamic Chiropractic and DC Practice Insights, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecedented seven publishing awards by the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE), the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
Medical Qigong for the Heart: Part III
Part 1 and Part II of this series focused on the physical aspect of the Heart and mental emotional aspects of the Heart respectively. Now, I would like to focus on the spiritual aspect of the Heart.
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
Pain Underfoot: Metatarsalgia
Foot pain can interfere significantly with normal activities and severely limit participation in sports. Metatarsalgia is foot pain involving the metatarsal bones in the forefoot – the complaint of pain on the bottom of the ball of the foot.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
A Chinese Medicine Story: An Interview with Mazin Al-Khafaji
Mazin Al-Khafaji's work has interested me for years. In February 2014, we invited him for the second time to speak at the Southwest Symposium in Austin, Texas.
Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
April, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 04
Touch Programs Help Families Bring Cancer Patients Relief
By Massage Therapy Foundation Contributor
Contributed by Jolie Haun, PhD, EdS, LMT, Ruth Werner, Immediate Past President MTF, Beth Barberree, RMT, BA
Effectively addressing the needs of patients with cancer requires a multi-faceted holistic approach in the clinical care and home setting.Innovative approaches to patient care integrate family members as informal caregivers, to help meet patients'; needs. In this month';s Massage Therapy Foundation research review, we share findings and implications from a randomized controlled trial that evaluated a multimedia instructional program for family caregivers in touch-based techniques to provide comfort to cancer patients at home. The manuscript was published by Supportive Care in Cancer in 2013.
The proposal was to teach loved ones how to massage cancer patients. Massage is a popular palliative modality for symptom relief associated with cancer and associated treatment. Research has demonstrated significant effects for patients with cancer on symptoms such as pain, nausea, stress, anxiety, mood disturbance, fatigue and sleep disturbance. Understanding the need for symptom relief and leveraging the role of informal caregivers, Collinge and colleagues developed a touch-based program for at-home caregivers. The program was designed to empower them with the ability to have an impact on patient well-being through the use of partnered massage. These authors suggest a caregiver-based program such as this can benefit the patient, the partner and the quality of their relationship.
Collinge and colleagues developed a multilingual (i.e. English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese) DVD, with an illustrated, spiral bound manual to be used as a home-based instructional tool. (The program is now also available online via streaming video with an ebook manual.) The program, entitled "Touch, Caring and Cancer: Simple Instruction for Family and Friends," addresses, "attitudes and communication about touch in cancer, psychological preparation for giving and receiving touch, safety precautions, massage techniques for comfort and relaxation, acupressure for specific cancer-related symptoms and practice in the home setting." This program offers patients, their family members and loved ones an economical home-based self-paced alternative for symptom relief.
The experiment used was massage for one group and reading aloud for the other. A sample of 97 adult patient and caregiver dyads was randomized to the treatment (DVD massage program) or control groups (reading any literature of the patient';s choice such as poetry, fiction, nonfiction, religious, etc.) for four weeks. Treatment dyads received the program with instructions and were asked to practice at least three times per week. In the control dyads, caregivers were asked to read to their patients for the same frequency. To measure outcomes, self-report instruments assessed change in symptom severity, quality of life, perceived stress and caregiver attitudes.
Results indicate significant reductions in all symptoms for patients in both groups after a 20-minute session of their assigned activity: 12% to 28% reductions after being read to, and 29% to 44% reductions after massage. Though both groups showed improvements, "The average proportion of decreased symptomatology reported from pre- to post-sessions over the four weeks was significantly greater for patients in the massage condition for pain, nausea and other self-reported symptoms (i.e. less common symptoms yet those that were significant to patients)." Significant effects across time were also indicated. Symptom improvement was significantly greater for the treatment group (caregiver massage) than the control group (caregiver reading) for stress and anxiety in weeks two, three and four, pain in weeks three and four and fatigue in weeks one and four.
Massage caregivers in the treatment group reported satisfaction with their ability to help their loved one feel better. They showed significant improvements in confidence, comfort and self-efficacy. There were no significant differences within or between patient groups on the Perceived Stress Scale or the General Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Version 4. However, the authors did note using the specialized statistical method, Classification Tree Analysis, statistically significant associations were found between patients'; diagnostic and massage variables with their Perceived Stress Scale score at follow-up.
No adverse events were reported during the study, which suggests that the massage taught on the DVD appears to be safe for this population.
Collinge and colleagues conclude that, "multimedia instruction in touch and massage methods may offer family members a viable means of enhancing self-efficacy and satisfaction in caregiving while decreasing patient pain, depression and other symptoms. Family members may be able to learn and apply safe and simple methods that increase patient comfort and reduce distress."
This study has several meaningful implications for the field of massage research and practice. First, these findings support previous research suggesting massage is an effective palliative modality for patients with cancer. Further, these findings indicate that massage, which is typically considered a clinical or spa treatment, may be re-conceptualized as a home-based treatment provided informal caregivers are given proper instruction. Practitioners of Complementary and Alternative Medicine, particularly massage therapists, can consider programs such as Touch, Caring and Cancer as an option to complement other clinical treatments, such as formal massage therapy regimens, to provide patients comfort in the home setting between clinical and massage treatments. This program is one of many that can be created for patients with diverse conditions as an alternative. For example, Collinge and colleagues are currently evaluating a similar home-based integrative therapies program called Mission Reconnect, to promote well-being and relationship resilience in veterans and their partners healing the effects of military deployment. Programs such as these will create a new economical, home-based, self-paced option for diverse patient populations to receive symptom relief at the caring hands of their family members and loved ones.
To learn more about touch and caregiving, you can review the Massage Therapy Foundation article archives, read accepted MTF Research Grant abstracts, or search Pub Med for CAM/CIM cost analysis studies.
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