What is Integrative Cancer Care?
The concept of integrative cancer care is gaining ground through institutional interest, patient demand and research demonstrating its personal and economic value in healthcare.
Integrative oncology has been described by the Society for Integrative Oncology in their Clinical Practice Guidelines for Integrative Oncology as “both a science and philosophy that focuses on the complex health of people with cancer and proposes an array of approaches to accompany the conventional therapies of surgery, chemotherapy, molecular therapeutics, and radiotherapy to facilitate health.”
Integrative cancer care involves the appropriate use of adjunctive, evidence-based complementary therapies in the care and support of cancer patients.
Research has shown that modalities such as acupuncture, body work, nutrition, mind-body skills and emotional counseling, used alongside conventional western medicine, can offer patients a deeper level of support through the challenges of cancer.
These therapies offer a wide range of benefits, from therapeutic anti-cancer effects and treatment side effect management to reducing stress and anxiety and supporting patients emotionally and spiritually through their cancer experience.