The Healing Touch: Cancer Institute Patients Benefit from Oncology Massage
Cancer treatment can bring with it many unwanted side effects, including stress, pain, anxiety and fatigue. To offer relief, patients at the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute now have the opportunity to enjoy a relaxing massage while receiving chemotherapy.
Licensed massage therapist Johnnie Minor offers the service every other Wednesday and Thursday in Infusion Clinic 1. (Check the Event Calendar)In addition to hours of training and certification in oncology massage, Minor also is licensed as a massage therapy instructor and is certified in lymph drainage. She has a private massage practice located near UAMS.
Minor’s services are funded by a grant from the Cancer Institute Auxiliary to the institute’s Social Work Department.
Minor began coming to the Cancer Institute in July and offers partial massages, such as to the neck and shoulders, hands, feet or arms. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, with patient responses such as, “Your touch felt good. People don’t touch me the way they used to.” Most patients are able to receive a massage if they desire.
Many people going through cancer treatment experience periods of increased stress, pain, anxiety, depression and fatigue. During the past few decades, there has been an increased awareness of and interest in integrating other forms of treatment, such as massage, acupuncture and visualization into the more traditional treatment approaches. Studies have demonstrated that massage not only decreases these symptoms, but also improves mobility and lessens the effects of lymphedema, which is the limb swelling often caused by the removal of or damage to lymph nodes during cancer treatment.
Patients or their care partners desiring more information can speak to a nurse in Infusion Clinic 1 or visit the Social Work Department in the Patient Support Pavilion on the first floor.