The benefits of Reflexology with those experiencing cancer has long been understood, but research gives further credence and support to the benefits of Reflexology as a supplement to Cancer Care therapy.
Not only is the comforting human touch beneficial and relaxing for both the person receiving cancer treatment, but Reflexology has been shown to be beneficial for family and loved ones. Recently published research has found scientific backing to previous claims regarding the benefits of Reflexology and cancer care.“Medical Applications of Reflexology: Findings in Research about Post- operative Care, Maternity Care, and Cancer Care” by Barbara and Kevin Kunz provides research information for cancer patients, shows that cancer patients who receive reflexology work experienced significant improvements:
♣ lessened pain
♣ lessened anxiety
♣ reduced nausea and vomiting
♣ lowered fatigue
♣ improvements in quality of life
♣ bettered mood
♣ improvements in quality of sleep, stress, depression, foot fatigue, morale and vital signs.
Research shows that cancer patients who receive reflexology work experienced significant improvements in the management of symptoms, chemotherapy, post-operative and palliative care.
The research found that from a single 30-minute reflexology session, metastatic cancer patients demonstrated a significant decrease in pain intensity (37%) and anxiety (62%). One 30-minute session also demonstrated:
– Significantly decreased anxiety for breast and lung cancer patients receiving cancer care as well as pain for breast cancer patients.
– lessened pain, nausea, stress, anxiety, and depression as well as increased feelings of well-being and peacefulness for hospitalized cancer care patients.
– A significant and immediate effect on perceptions of pain, nausea, and relaxation for hospitalized breast cancer, lung cancer, or Hodgkin lymphoma cancer patients
Even more, benefits were experienced from a series of Reflexology sessions:
– An immediate reduction in pain was realized for patients with metastatic cancer. Since no effect was perceived after 3 hours, re-application is suggested at 3 hours.
♣ Breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy experienced a statistically significant decrease in nausea, vomiting, and fatigue following four 40-minute reflexology sessions.
♣ 10-minute hand reflexology sessions each day for five consecutive days significantly lowered the degree of fatigue, anxiety and mood state of cancer patients receiving radiotherapy
♣ A 30-minute session before chemotherapy for 4 days resulted in significantly lower depression and anxiety for hospitalized patients with hematological malignancies receiving chemotherapy.
♣ 20 to 30 minutes three times daily of the Japanese tradition of bamboo stepping significantly reduced nausea and vomiting following chemotherapy for 62.5% and effective for 28%.
♣ 10-minute hand reflexology sessions 5 times over 3 days improved physiological and emotional measures for patients receiving dialysis and chemotherapy.
♣ Reflexology sessions applied each day for 3 days significantly lowered the state anxiety and dis- comfort of hospitalized ovarian cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.
♣ 5 to 15-minute reflexology sessions in the infusion room 2 days a week met goals of increasing comfort and relaxation for cancer patients receiving chemotherapy in an outpatient program.
Reflexology has been shown to benefit cancer care at various stages of treatment, from chemotherapy to post-operative care and palliative hospice care. For how-to instructions for reflexology techniques with full-color photos and illustrations, see Complete Reflexology for Life by Barbara and Kevin Kunz.
Follow this series of blogs demonstrating Reflexology research conducted around the world, which will showcase the benefits to patients in three areas: post-operative care, maternity care, and cancer care.