The Benefits of Acupuncture to the Side Effects of Breast Cancer Treatment
For patients going through breast cancer treatment, acupuncture is a brilliant form of therapy to help during and afterwards. The breast cancer treatment used to combat the disease can be painful and the side effects can be difficult to deal with. The suffering that occurs from the side effect can be minimised with the help of acupuncture, reducing pain, nausea, fatigue, it can also alleviate stress and improve your quality of life.
Research is increasingly proving the effect of acupuncture in relieving several symptoms associated with breast cancer treatment such as joint pain and stiffness; common side effects of breast cancer treatment.
The European Journal of Cancer published a study, giving further evidence of acupuncture’s benefits to women undergoing breast cancer treatment. A randomised controlled eight week study, using electro-acupuncture with postmenopausal breast cancer patients who were taking Aromatic Inhibitors and experiencing joint pain, was carried out by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania.
Aromatase inhibitors are a type of hormonal therapy commonly used in treating certain types of breast cancer. Patients taking using this type of therapy unfortunately experience a lot of joint oain and some will stop treatment due to the pain and suffering it causes. The study’s findings prove that acupuncture can help reduce this joint pain as the patients on the study who received acupuncture had a 43% decrease of pain after 10 sessions.
Other studies have also shown positive results of the use of acupuncture to combat the side effects caused by breast cancer treatment. In 2010 the Journal of Clinical Oncology published a similar study showing that acupuncture relieved the pain and stiffness that hormone therapy caused for patients with breast cancer.
A combination of Western and Eastern medicine is the best course of action as modern treatment for breast cancer, raising the standard of care for patients coping with the disease and its treatment.