When undergoing mesothelioma treatment, many patients are now turning to complementary and alternative therapies (CAM). These therapies are used, as the name suggests, alone or in conjunction with traditional medical treatment.
Typical mesothelioma treatment includes radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery. CAM therapies do not provide a cure, but can add to quality of life and produce relief from the disease, as well as from standard treatment side effects for some patients.
Some CAM therapies are based in traditional or ancient healing practices, and some incorporate holistic and nutritional methods to provide palliative relief. Patients are recommended to consult with their medical oncology team to ensure that they are aware of available CAM therapies.
Some herbal or dietary supplements share common derivation with pharmaceuticals, so it is important that they complement each other and do not produce negative interactions.
For patients interested in exploring these therapies, they should work with an oncologist and consult with current research to make the best decision for combining traditional and CAM therapy.
Acupuncture and acupressure, only a few decades ago, were unknown to many in the United States. But today they have significantly increased in usage.
Acupuncture is the application of fine needles at specific corresponding pressure points on the body, depending on the desired outcome. Since its beginnings in ancient Chinese medicine, it has been used to address pain symptoms and promote recovery from different ailments.
Acupressure is similar in its origins and applies manual pressure to various points. Studies have shown that cancer patients undergoing radiation and chemotherapy have experienced reduction in pain, vomiting, and nausea side effects.
The practices of yoga and tai chi exercise are used to improve physical and mental health, as well as to increase movement overall.
Aromatherapy is the inhalation of essential oils derived from plants. The scented oils can be applied in small amounts to the body or inhaled through room vaporizers. Aromatherapy is designed to enhance the mood and contribute to an improved sense of wellbeing, which can be beneficial in cancer patients.
Nutritional therapies can vary. Nutritional therapy can include a specific diet prescribed by a dietitian that has the goal of a nutritionally balanced and sometimes vitamin rich or even vegetarian diet. Vitamin treatments or herbal supplements can additionally be recommended.
Emotional therapies are those therapies that address the mental and emotional effects common to those undergoing treatments for a serious illness. Informal group therapy or individual licensed therapist counseling and support groups designed for cancer patients are often available in cancer treatment centers or community organizations.
Another more commonly known method for cancer patients, as well as those suffering from emotional trauma, is emotional support animal therapy. Emotional support animals such as dogs and cats are sometimes provided through non-profit organizations in communities.
For those undergoing typical mesothelioma treatment, exploring options of how to integrate additional therapies can be useful. Patients who have been exposed to asbestos in the workplace or home should also contact a Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyer to ensure their rights are represented.
If you or a loved one has contracted mesothelioma from asbestos exposure, contact the experienced Pennsylvania mesothelioma lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler to evaluate your legal case. Consultations are available by calling 215-569-4000 or by completing our online form. We serve clients in Delaware County, Chester County, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.