In a nutshell
This study aimed to investigate the effect of therapeutic care for fatigue in breast cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy.
This study concluded that therapeutic care may decrease fatigue in breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
The standard of care treatment option for breast cancer and most other types of cancer is chemotherapy. Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs that kill cells to eliminate the cancer. However, chemotherapy affects normal cells as well as cancer cells and this can lead to side effects. One such side effect of chemotherapy is fatigue. This fatigue can lead to anxiety, depression and a poor quality of life if not treated soon enough.
Therapeutic care (TC) has the potential to treat chemotherapy related fatigue. TC is a form of alternative medicine and includes options like acupuncture. It was not known what effect TC could have on breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy who were experiencing fatigue.
Methods & findings
This study involved 48 breast cancer patients who were recieivng chemotherapy. 24 patients were assigned to the intervention group and were treated with TC. The TC was acupressure, or the pressing of points on the body thought to relieve fatigue. 24 were assigned to the control group and received no intervention.
The multidimensional fatigue inventory (MFI) was used to measure fatigue. The hospital anxiety and depression scale (HADS) and Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI) were used to measure anxiety and depression that can result from fatigue.
The intervention group had a greater decrease in MFI score after 6 and 12 weeks of treatment when compared to the control group.
The intervention group scored lower on the HADS and better sleep quality on the PSQI after 12 weeks when compared to the control group.
The bottom line
This study concluded that TC may decrease fatigue and relieve the anxiety and depression of breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.
The fine print
Larger studies need to be carried out to confirm findings.
Consult your physician about alternative treatment options for chemotherapy induced fatigue.
Published By :
Aug 01, 2017
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