Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is increasing in popularity with both patients and clinicians. In this section we present a number of current alternate therapies and systems, and complimentary practices. Some practices, although popular, have yet to be established as medically effective treatments via research literature.


Improved Pain Scores With Acupuncture for Arthralgia in Breast Cancer Not Clinically Meaningful

Improved Pain Scores With Acupuncture for Arthralgia in Breast Cancer Not Clinically Meaningful

In a multicenter study, researchers sought to determine if acupuncture effectively relieved aromatase inhibitor-related joint pain in patients with breast cancer.

Chinese Traditional Medicine Showed Effectiveness on Pain, Quality of Life in Advanced Cancer

Chinese Traditional Medicine Showed Effectiveness on Pain, Quality of Life in Advanced Cancer

In a randomized study, researchers sought to determine the effect of IV injections of coix seed oil, a Chinese CAM, on pain and quality of life measures for patients with advanced cancer.

Reflexology, Aromatherapy May Reduce Pain, Anxiety of Brachytherapy for Cervical Cancer

Reflexology, Aromatherapy May Reduce Pain, Anxiety of Brachytherapy for Cervical Cancer

A study presented at the 2018 ONS Annual Congress explored whether aromatherapy and reflexology can ease anxiety and pain for patients undergoing brachytherapy for cervical cancer.



Serum Albumin May Indicate Prognosis for Survival in Acute Myeloblastic Leukemia

Serum Albumin May Indicate Prognosis for Survival in Acute Myeloblastic Leukemia

A single-center retrospective study assessed the effectiveness of serum albumin levels and BMI as prognostic measures in patients with AML.

Higher Vitamin D Levels Associated With Lower Breast Cancer Risk

Higher Vitamin D Levels Associated With Lower Breast Cancer Risk

Pooled analysis finds levels 60 ng/mL are most protective among women aged 55 years and older

VIDA Findings Do Not Support Use of Vitamin D Supplements as Cancer Preventative

VIDA Findings Do Not Support Use of Vitamin D Supplements as Cancer Preventative

A post-hoc analysis of the VIDA study sought to determine if vitamin D levels influence risk for cancer and/or cancer prevention.



Frequency of Tanning, Risk for Melanoma Higher in Gym Tanners

Frequency of Tanning, Risk for Melanoma Higher in Gym Tanners

The use of tanning beds and/or booths and their availability in gyms may increase the frequency of indoor tanning for physically active adults, a combination that further exacerbates their risk for melanoma.

Combination Training Regimens Improve QOL for Breast Cancer Survivors

Combination Training Regimens Improve QOL for Breast Cancer Survivors

A systematic review of 36 studies evaluated their findings to determine an overall effect of various types of exercise on quality of life for breast cancer survivors.

Complementary Medicine Use May Have Link to Increased Risk of Death in Cancer

Complementary Medicine Use May Have Link to Increased Risk of Death in Cancer

A retrospective observational study revealed an association between complementary medicine use and patient adherence to conventional cancer treatment.



Hypnosis: A Comparison of the Efficacy of an Intervention Across Patient Populations

Hypnosis: A Comparison of the Efficacy of an Intervention Across Patient Populations

Researchers sought to determine if men with prostate cancer would derive the same benefits from hypnosis as women with breast cancer. Their results highlight significant differences in what is helpful for men vs women.

Live or Online Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Reduced Cancer-Related Psychological Distress

Live or Online Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Reduced Cancer-Related Psychological Distress

Mindfulness-based interventions are proven effective in helping patients with cancer manage distress and other psychological symptoms. In this study, researchers sought to determine if Internet-based MBCT can be as effective as face-to-face interventions.

Mindfulness Training May Improve End-of-Life Conversations in Advanced Cancer

Mindfulness Training May Improve End-of-Life Conversations in Advanced Cancer

Study presented at 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting determined the feasibility of using a mindfulness intervention to improve quality of life and confidence in advance care planning discussions among patient-family caregiver dyads.

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