Oncology Massage Part 1: Within the Hospital

Cancer.  It’s a word that brings terrible thoughts to people’s minds; including health specialists.  However, there are many specialists who specifically train to help cancer patients, who are either in treatment or those who are in the recovery stages. This includes some LMTs who have gone for training to make the experience of an Oncology Massage safer and more enjoyable.

stormtrooper
“My Doctor says that Massage Therapists can help during my chemotherapy treatment.  Is this true?”
Yes. Massage Therapists have been known to help patients inside and outside the hospital.
Inside the hospital, LMTs offer patients a lighter stroked massage during chemotherapy (chemo).  While sitting, the massage helps to calm anxiety and stress. It also allows for any tight muscles to be relaxed with simple touch and light coaxing.  The therapist is also there to talk, if you wish.
Personal Note: Massage Therapy isn’t the only thing offered.  One of my clients mentioned that Acupuncture on the feet and hands, and Reiki was also offered during their sessions.

surgery
“What about after Surgery? Is Massage offered at that point?”
Sometimes, depending on the surgery, people have their limbs in odd positions during the procedure.  Patients with breast cancer usually have their arm up over their head during surgery, causing shoulder and neck discomfort.  Those with lower abdominal cancer, sometimes have a leg out or at an angle, causing hip and lower back discomfort.  Light massage can help ease this tension, depending on your body’s numbers and if it’s cleared by your doctor.
If your platelet, red blood cell, and white blood cell count is normal, it should be safe enough for massage to be performed after surgery.  As long as there are no other complications, and the doctor gives the Massage Therapist direction on what is safe, your experience can be more relaxing.

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