Health Intuitive

Study Shows That Acupressure Decreases Persistent Fatigue In Women With Breast Cancer

A new study has found that acupressure helped decrease persistent fatigue in women who have had breast cancer therapy.

One of the most common longstanding effects of breast cancer therapy is fatigue. About 1/3 of women suffer from moderate to extreme fatigue a decade after their therapy has ended.

The JAMA Oncology published the study that discovered acupressure has the ability to lessen fatigue by 27% – 34% after six weeks of treatment. 67% of women who used a certain type of healing method called relaxing acupressure attained normal levels of fatigue.

University of Michigan associate research professor of family medicine Suzanna Zick says “Across various types of chronic diseases, particularly cancer, fatigue is an underappreciated symptom. It can have a substantial impact on a person’s quality of life. Patients can do acupressure themselves and this therapy is easy to learn “.

Acupressure originated from a healing system known as traditional Chinese medicine or TCM. TCM involves the application of pressure with a device, thumbs, or fingers over specific pressure points on the body. Scientists examined two forms of acupressure: stimulating acupressure, which is utilized to increase energy and relaxing acupressure, which is used to traditionally treat insomnia. These two methods differ by which acupoints on the body are activated.

Researchers examined 424 breast cancer survivors from the Michigan Tumor Registry. These patients were randomly designated to usual care, which involves regular sleep-management methods, stimulating acupressure, or relaxing acupressure. The women learned how to locate and stimulate the pressure points so that they could do it at home once a day for one and a half months.

Both acupressure therapies lad sustained meaningful improvements in fatigue at the end of the study. However, it was only relaxing acupressure that improved the patients quality of sleep (that included overall quality of life and disrupted sleep).

Past research suggests acupuncture in Tarzana might work in relieving fatigue. Unfortunately, many insurance companies do not acupuncture therapies; in addition, it requires people go visit a therapist one or two times a week for at a month and a half.

On the other hand, acupressure proved it can be done at home and can be easy to learn in this study.

The subjects in the trial had 15 minutes of training and were able to locate precisely the proper pressure points and utilize the right amount of pressure. Some females experienced slight bruising at the selected acupressure points. About 12% of the subjects did not continue the study because they thought it was very time-intensive.

According to Zick, “Acupressure can be a low-cost option for the treatment of fatigue given the brief training required to learn it”.

To teach acupressure, the researchers have developed a mobile application. They intend to study why acupressure affects fatigue and whether it also works for patients in active therapy and with cancers other than cancers of the breast.

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