Today, cancer is still one of the most prevalent diseases in the world.  Modern medicine has made considerable advancements in the treatment of the disease.  Such improvements include surgery, anti-cancer drug therapy, radiation therapy, and immunotherapy.  The ideal treatment is early detection and removal of the tumor. However, often the early detection period has passed and more aggressive, systemic treatments are required.  These treatments are necessary to eradicate cancer cells.  However, they can wreak havoc on our body’s systems, functions, overall well being.

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine has been used for centuries by ancient physicians. This has allowed for an unique understanding of the nature of cancer and comprehensive treatment strategies to support cancer patients.  Primary goals are to:

  1. Understand what body patterns allowed for cancer to proliferate and address them
  2. Provide additional support during times of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapies
  3. Rebuild, recover, and replenish the body after anti-cancer therapies so patients can quickly and successfully return back to their normal lives.

Common side effects managed by acupuncture

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Dry cough
  • Depression
  • Pain
  • Insomnia
  • Mental Confusion
  • Fatigue

At appropriate stages of treatment, the following will be  focused on:

  1. Boosting Immune Function
  2. Promoting Healthy Detoxification
  3. Assisting with blood and qi (energy, conductivity, etc.) movement so the body may return back to homeostasis

In the United States, acupuncture treatment as a complimentary treatment has been recommended by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the National Cancer Institute. The most thorough study of acupuncture in breast cancer patients was published in Journal of the American Medical Association in 2000. In the study, 104 women undergoing high-dose chemotherapy were given traditional anti-nausea medication. In addition to taking the medication, the women were randomly chosen to receive 5 days of electro-acupuncture (acupuncture in which needles are stimulated with a mild electrical current), acupuncture without an electrical current, or no acupuncture. The women who had acupuncture had significantly fewer nausea episodes than those who didn’t.

Another study, completed at Duke University and published in 2002, compared the use of acupuncture to the use of Zofran (chemical name: Ondansetron), an anti-nausea medication, before breast cancer surgery to reduce the nausea that can occur after surgery. The acupuncture treatment was found to work better than Zofran at controlling nausea.