Reflexology offers relief for chemotherapy side effects

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reflexologyby Jacki Donaldson, The Cancer Blog

I heard a man interviewed on the news the other night who said the side effects of chemotherapy make him feel so poorly, so unlike he once felt. Recently, however, he discovered a remedy that makes him feel better, more like he did before chemotherapy took its toll on his well-being. His remedy -- reflexology.

Reflexology does not erase the side effects of chemotherapy, but it can provide relief for patients whose lives are altered by chemotherapy-induced nausea, pain, fatigue, and anxiety.

Reflexology, or zone therapy, is the application of pressure, stretch, and movement to the feet and hands in order to break up patterns of stress in corresponding parts of the body. There are many theories about how this practice actually works -- one is that applied pressure signals the nervous system to initiate changes in the brain which promotes inner balance. Still, all theories operate according to the belief that reflexology reduces stress and anxiety and lessens overall wear and tear on the body systems. And many medical professionals are incorporating this therapy into their cancer care programs.

Some doctors are not so quick to embrace this complementary therapy that has no real scientific backing. They believe reflexology is nothing more than a pseudoscience, offering the same benefits as massage.

The enthusiastic man I watched on the news is not concerned with popular opinion on the zone therapy he receives on his feet. It makes him feel better -- and that's all that concerns him.

source - The Cancer Blog 

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