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Is it OK for cancer patients to get a massage?

There has been a long held misconception that massage should not be done for those with cancer. Many once believed that massage can spread cancer further in the body but this has no scientific basis at all. In fact studies have shown that receiving regular massage during and after treatment of cancer can be measurably beneficial in managing the side effects of such treatments. However, not all massages are the same when it comes to supporting those with a cancer diagnosis and its important to seek out a qualified therapist that has been specifically trained in oncology massage.

What is Oncology Massage?

It is a modified form of massage that uses gentle fascial mobilization techniques in place of firm pressure. A qualified oncology massage therapist understands the side effects of cancer treatments and the impact on the patient’s day to day life. They will design massage treatments that take into consideration surgical sites, possible affected lymph nodes, scarring and general overall vitality of their client throughout their cancer treatment and beyond.

What are the benefits of Oncology Massage?

Oncology massage does not aim treat nor cure the disease itself but rather support the patient to relieve, reduce and or minimise the side effects of treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation.


Regular oncology massage can offer:

·         Improved relaxation, sleep, and immune function

·         Relieve anxiety, pain, fatigue, and nausea

Many patients going through cancer treatments have made massage a part of their recovery and healing process or even offering comfort and nurturing support in palliative care in their final days.

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