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Acupuncture for the Cancer Patient

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Presentation on theme: "Acupuncture for the Cancer Patient"— Presentation transcript:

1 Acupuncture for the Cancer Patient
An Integrative Approach From Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Danee Barnett, AP, DOM

2 How does Acupuncture work?
Acupuncture is a complex branch of ancient Chinese medicine that has been successfully practiced for over 2,500 years, but its practical principles and methods are easily understood.

3 Fourteen major energy channels called meridians course through the human body including the head, arms, hands, feet, torso and internal organs. A subtle energy called Qi (pronounced chee) circulates via these meridians to all parts of the body, even the most remote cells.

4 Qi is the vital force, the presence of which separates the living from the dead. Its balanced, unimpeded flow is critical to sound health.

5 Qi flows through each of us like a river, energizing, nourishing and supporting every cell, tissue, muscle, organ and gland.

6 Any misdirection, blockage, or other derangement of the amount, flow or balance of Qi may result in pain, dysfunction and ill health.

7 These imbalances can be caused by
Stress Trauma Accidents Improper Diet Strain Surgery

8 With acupuncture needles,
I stimulate specific points (acupuncture points) along the course of the meridians. Such stimulation helps restore the normal balance and flow of Qi so organs and bodily systems can work together in harmony as intended

9 Acupuncture was initiated at Sloan-Kettering in 1999
Approximately 1400 outpatients per month are treated with acupuncture Inpatient services are offered free of charge

10 Nutritional Counseling
In addition to acupuncture, other integrative therapies offered include: Touch Therapies Fitness Mind-Body Meditation Music Therapy Nutritional Counseling

11 Although many Chinese herbal formulas may help in cancer treatment they are are NOT used at MSKCC during chemotherapy because there has not been enough research to determine if they help or hinder the effects of chemo

12 Alternative vs. Complementary
Alternative Therapies Promoted for use INSTEAD of mainstream care Many are biologically invasive Costly, potentially harmful Complementary Therapies Used WITH mainstream care for cancer Non-invasive Inexpensive, safe and beneficial

13 Complementary Therapies
Used WITH mainstream care for cancer Non-invasive inexpensive, safe and beneficial Effectively reduce side effects Enable self-care and control Enhance well-being and quality of life Reduce fear, distress, depression, anxiety Safe, non-invasive, inexpensive and easy to use

14 How is Acupuncture used at Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center?

15 Acupuncture for Surgical Patients (pre-surgery)
promotes relaxation prevents infection shortens recovery time less post-op pain optimum time of treatment is 2 days before surgery

16 Acupuncture for Surgical Patients (post-surgery)
less swelling less pain improves mental alertness improves intestinal mobility and urination shortens recovery time promotes incision healing optimum time of acupuncture treatment: 2 days post surgery, 1 week post surgery and 2 weeks post surgery

17 Acupuncture for Radiation Patients
reduces fatigue helps anemia increases white blood cell count helps nausea and vomiting stops diarrhea helps burns decreases hair loss can help with infertility due to treatment

18 Acupuncture for Chemotherapy Patients
Helps nausea and vomiting decreases hair loss helps fatigue and shortness of breath strengthen immune system Increases appetite Helps red and white blood cell counts stops diarrhea helps neuropathy optimum time of acupuncture treatment is 1-2 hours before treatment and 24 hours after treatment. If only one treatment is possible, treat before chemo.

19 What Causes Cancer? Genetics Exposure to harmful elements
Lack of protective elements Bad habits CHANCE notes: tobacco, carcinogens in food and environment UV protection, exercise, obesity

20 One Third of Cancers Are Preventable with Lifestyle

21 BE PRO-ACTIVE! Research at Sloan-Kettering
shows us many things we can do ourselves to help avoid a recurrence of cancer BE PRO-ACTIVE!

22 EXERCISE INCREASES SURVIVAL (and it’s never too late to start)

50-60% increase in survivorship seen with regular physical fitness Nurse Health Study: 2987 Nurses with breast cancer decreased their risk of death from breast cancer by 50-60% by exercising more than 9 hours per week vs. less than 3 hours per week.

832 stage III colon cancer patients receiving chemotherapy Reported physical activities 6 month completion of chemotherapy 51% decreased risk of dying from colon cancer for hours/week vs. less than 3 hours/week

55% decreased risk for 27+ hours/week exercise The benefit is not significantly modified by sex, body mass index, number of lymph nodes involved, age, baseline performance status or chemotherapy received

26 Exercise is Huge JUST DO IT!

27 Guidelines for Physical Fitness for most Cancer Patients and Survivors
• Do continuous or intermittent aerobic exercise 20-60 minutes 3-5x/wk • Do anabolic exercise 6-12 reps and 1-4 sets of each exercise for major muscle groups 1-3 x/wk •Do flexibility exercises for major muscle groups 2-4 sets each exercise 2-3x/wk (i.e. Yoga, Qi Gong, Tai Chi)

28 Diet Recommendations from Sloan-Kettering

29 The Mediterranean Diet

30 Mediterranean Diet Benefits
• Analysis of 1.5+ million patients • Greater adherence to the Mediterranean Diet has 9% reduction in overall mortality • 9% reduction in cardio-vascular mortality • 6% reduction in cancer mortality • 13% decreased incidence of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s

31 What’s in the Diet? • 3-5 serving of fresh fruits/day
• 2-5 servings of fresh vegetables/day • 2+ Proteins/day (fish, legumes, nuts, etc.) • WHOLE GRAINS (whole wheat, brown rice etc.) • Extra virgin olive oil rather than (NOT in addition to) butter or margarine

32 Eat This!

33 Nutritional Supplement Recommendations from Sloan-Kettering

34 • 20+ billion dollars are spent each year in the USA on vitamins and nutritional supplements • Anti-oxidants are highly marketed and are of uncertain benefit • Wheat Grass, Gogi, Noni, Acai, Pomegranate, Green Tea, Reveratrol, Vitamins A, C and E have not proven to be of any real benefit


36 Don’t waste your money on supplements, just eat good, healthy food as per the Mediterranean Diet.

37 There are however, 2 supplements that Sloan-Kettering Recommends.

38 VITAMIN D 1000-2000 IU Daily • Most people are vitamin D deficient
• Minimal vitamin D is obtained from food sources (80 oz. of milk needed to get sufficient D) • Improved outcomes from lung, breast, and colorectal cancer with sufficient vitamin D levels • Sufficient D levels cut risk of colorectal cancer by 50%

39 Calcium mg/day • Calcium Citrate is helpful for colon cancer, prostate cancer and osteoporosis • Calcium / Magnesium combo prevents constipation • Calcium Citrate is the most bio available • Take with food - only 500 mg. at a time

40 Summary • Eat healthy food, not supplements • Eat mostly plants
• Be physically active every day • Stay as lean as possible without being underweight • Take your Calcium and Vitamin D

41 Mind-Body Meditation Sloan-Kettering has patients listen
to audio recordings that help visualize the cancer being destroyed.


43 FEEL them sticking to the problem
SEE them orbiting FEEL them sticking to the problem HEAR them buzzing as they do their work SMELL and TASTE the energy they are creating MAKE IT REAL


45 SEE the electric blue liquid light energy FEEL it flowing through you
HEAR it cascading SMELL and TASTE its refreshing qualities MAKE IT REAL

46 Trust Your Instincts

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