Is there a role for complementary therapy in the management of leukemia? Journal Article


Authors: Wesa, K. M.; Cassileth, B. R.
Article Title: Is there a role for complementary therapy in the management of leukemia?
Abstract: Patients with leukemia often seek additional treatments not prescribed by their oncologist in an effort to improve their cancer treatment outcome or to manage symptoms. Complementary therapies are used in conjunction with traditional cancer treatments to decrease symptoms and side effects associated with cancer or cancer treatment, and to improve patients' overall quality of life. Complementary therapies are distinct from so-called 'alternative' therapies, which are unproven, ineffective and may postpone or interfere with mainstream cancer treatment. Complementary therapies are pleasant, inexpensive, nonpharmacologic and effective. For patients with leukemia, the complementary therapies that are always appropriate include mind-body interventions, such as self-hypnosis, meditation, guided imagery and breath awareness. Massage and reflexology (foot massage) decrease symptoms with effects lasting at least 2 days following treatment. Acupuncture is very beneficial for symptom management without adverse consequences. Physical fitness with regular exercise and healthy dietary habits can significantly decrease side effects of cancer treatments and may prolong survival. Botanical extracts and vitamin supplements may interfere with active cancer treatments, and should be discussed with the oncologist or pharmacist before use. © 2009 Expert Reviews Ltd.
Keywords: treatment outcome; leukemia; survival rate; unclassified drug; overall survival; clinical trial; review; placebo; drug withdrawal; nonhuman; unspecified side effect; paclitaxel; drug megadose; antineoplastic agent; nutritional status; animals; quality of life; bortezomib; multiple myeloma; peripheral neuropathy; prevalence; exercise; lung cancer; calcium; cancer therapy; risk assessment; cost effectiveness analysis; health care cost; survival time; intervention study; drug antagonism; drug mechanism; head and neck cancer; vitamin d; diabetes mellitus; warfarin; heparin; vitamin supplementation; intermethod comparison; malignant neoplastic disease; alternative medicine; complementary therapies; plant extract; ayurveda; antioxidant; music therapy; alpha tocopherol; ascorbic acid; folic acid; clinical effectiveness; selenium; acupuncture; fitness; meditation; physical activity; yoga; epigallocatechin gallate; multivitamin; lifestyle modification; drug dose increase; dietary intake; risk reduction; hypnosis; massage; tai chi; chronic lymphatic leukemia; beta carotene; physical fitness; homeopathy; botanical supplements; massage therapy; mind-body therapies; nutrition; agaricus extract; green tea extract; vitamin; agaricus; guided imagery; herbal medicine; medicinal plant; reflexology
Journal Title: Expert Review of Anticancer Therapy
Volume: 9
Issue: 9
ISSN: 1473-7140
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Group  
Date Published: 2009-09-01
Start Page: 1241
End Page: 1249
Language: English
DOI: 10.1586/era.09.100
PUBMED: 19761428
PROVIDER: scopus
PMCID: PMC2792198
DOI/URL:
Notes: --- - "Export Date: 30 November 2010" - "CODEN: ERATB" - "Source: Scopus"
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  1. Kathleen Wesa
    19 Wesa
  2. Barrie R Cassileth
    195 Cassileth