resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
A Major Role in Back Pain: The Multifidus
Back pain affects roughly 80 percent of the population at one time or another and is one of the leading causes of doctor visits.
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Is the New Medicare Reporting Exemption Right for You?
What you've heard is not a rumor – there will be exemptions for providers of Medicare patients, with no penalties assessed for offices that do not do Quality Payment Program (EHR, PQRS, MACRA and MIPS) reporting.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
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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