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    ABSTRACT: There is insufficient evidence to draw conclusions about the benefits of massage and aromatherapy massage for cancer patients Aromatherapy massage and massage are commonly used complementary therapies, employed in cancer and palliative care to improve quality of life and reduce psychological distress. This review assessed eight trials and found that massage alone and massage with aromatherapy oils might reduce anxiety in cancer patients in the short term but there was insufficient evidence to draw firm conclusions. These interventions may also have a beneficial effect on physical symptoms of cancer but again there is a lack of research evidence to assess effectiveness. Further trials with longer follow-up periods are needed.
    Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 02/2004; 3(2):CD002287. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD002287.pub2 · 6.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This paper is a report of a review to assess evidence of the effectiveness of massage for patients with cancer, in terms of reducing physical or psychological symptoms, improving quality of life, or producing unwanted side effects. Patients with cancer may use complementary therapies, including massage and aromatherapy massage. However, their use and provision by state-financed healthcare services is controversial. A systematic review was carried out, using the Cochrane principles. No meta-analysis was appropriate. An initial comprehensive search of electronic databases search was carried out in 2003 and updated in 2006. Eligible trials were randomized controlled trials, controlled before-and-after (pre-post) studies and interrupted time-series studies. Participants were adults with a diagnosis of cancer and receiving care in any healthcare setting. Interventions were limited to massage and/or aromatherapy massage carried out by a qualified therapist. Outcome measures to be included were patient-reported levels of physical and psychological indices of symptom distress and quality of life (measured using validated assessment tools). In the review, 1325 papers were considered. Ten trials met the inclusion criteria and their results suggest that massage might reduce anxiety in patients with cancer in the short term and may have a beneficial effect on physical symptoms of cancer, such as pain and nausea. However, the lack of rigorous research evidence precludes drawing definitive conclusions. Further well-designed large trials with longer follow-up periods are needed to be able to draw firm conclusions about the efficacy and effectiveness of massage for cancer patients.
    Journal of Advanced Nursing 10/2008; 63(5):430-9. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2648.2008.04712.x · 1.74 Impact Factor