According to a new study published in the journal Cancer Nursing Practice, researchers from The Christie NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester, England, have found that patients with cancer who experience "procedure-related" stress benefit from rapid stress management techniques (RSMTs).
For the study, researchers enrolled 19 patients who had been referred to the acute oncology complementary therapy service for anxiety related to chemotherapy and radiotherapy procedures. Specifically, patients had claustrophobia, fear of nausea before actual treatment, and needle phobia.
Participants were typically taught two stress management techniques, such as tightening and releasing stress balls while performing four slow breaths, tightening and releasing muscle groups while performing slow comfortable breaths, and sipping water and holding in on the tongue for 10 seconds before swallowing.
Patients reported that the complementary therapies helped them avoid feelings of fear of exhaustion and loneliness, reduce feelings of panic, empowered patients to "fight" the cancer. The interventions were ultimately able to help patients calm themselves before and during the medical procedures.
Cancer patients benefit from stress relief techniques and complementary therapy to manage their fears of medical procedures, according to a new service evaluation study.