Alternative therapies have become a huge interest to many mesothelioma patients. One therapy that may help improve a patient’s quality of life is oncology massage.

Some hospitals offer oncology massage to their patients as a form of therapy. Many individuals may find that getting a massage can help comfort and ease their stress and other symptoms relating to their cancer treatments.

What is Oncology Massage?

Image of someone getting a back massage. According to Society for Oncology Massage, “oncology massage is like a vacation from cancer.”

The technique of massage has been used for over 5,000 years. Oncology massage is thought to help individuals with many aspects of healing.

Massage helps:

  • Heal injuries
  • Relieve pain
  • Induce relaxation
  • Omit stress
  • Nausea
  • Immune function

Today massage therapy is a respected form of holistic health that many patients may choose to participate in. Research has even revealed that patients can benefit from it.

Did You Know?
Massage therapy has been used in the United States for healing since the beginning of the 20th century.

Researching Massage Therapy for Cancer Patients

A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine zoned in on the benefits that massage therapy can bring to cancer patients.

The study revealed that “Pain and depressed mood are common among cancer patients and drugs don’t always work to ease these symptoms. Researchers think that massage may interrupt the cycle of distress offering brief physical and psychological benefits.”

The trial consisted of 380 late-stage cancer patients that were in hospice care. These patients received massage therapy 3 times a week for 2 weeks.

“It makes me almost totally forget the pain and suffering that I’ve had from the cancer. I feel much better. I feel renewed. And I just feel completely relaxed and much better all over, mentally and physically,” stated one of the patients.

The study concluded that the therapy helped manage pain and improved the mood of the participants. It also stated that more research needs to be conducted to see the full benefits that oncology massage can have for cancer patients.

What Happens During an Oncology Massage Session?

During a session, a massage therapist that is experienced in oncology massage will meet with the patient. They will ask a series of questions to get an understanding of the patient’s disease.

A massage therapist may ask about:

After a therapist has a better understanding of an individual’s disease, they will adapt massage techniques that are best suited for them. In many circumstances, the therapist may change the pressure of a patient’s massage or their position during treatment.

For more information about oncology massage, check out this short video.

Treating Mesothelioma Patients with Massage

Oncology massage can be beneficial to mesothelioma patients. Since treatment is so aggressive, a patient may experience a variety of side effects, such as stiffness and fatigue from surgery.

Check out what this cancer survivor has to say about her experience with oncology massage.

As a mesothelioma patient, finding the best treatment options and specialists are your number one priorities. Believe it or not, there are hospitals known for their mesothelioma programs that offer this kind of therapy to their patients.

4 hospitals that offer oncology massage

It is important that patients speak with their doctor if they are considering participating in oncology massage.

Have you participated in oncology massage? Tell us about it in a comment below.

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    Sources & Author

  1. What is oncology massage?. Society for Oncology Massage. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  2. ONCOLOGY MASSAGE BRINGS PAIN RELIEF TO CANCER PATIENTS. Massage Magazine. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  3. The benefits of oncology massage. The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  4. Massage for cancer patients: 4 tips to find a qualified therapist. The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  5. History of Massage Therapy. Natural Healers. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  6. Massage Therapy for Advanced Cancer Patients. YouTube Video by: My Medical Reports. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  7. Massage Therapy versus Simple Touch to Improve Pain and Mood in Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Randomized Trial. Annals of Internal Medicine. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  8. Is massage safe for me?. Society for Oncology Massage. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
  9. Massage therapy for cancer patients: a reciprocal relationship between body and mind. US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health. Retrieved from: Accessed: 11/29/2017.
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About the Writer, Nicole Godfrey

Nicole Godfrey is the Senior Content Writer for Mesothelioma Guide. She writes and edits pages to make sure that mesothelioma patients and their families receive the most current and significant information about mesothelioma.