resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
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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