Chemotherapy is one of the most widely-used and most-aggressive forms of cancer treatment. Even though often times the treatment is successful, it can put a tremendous amount of strain and discomfort on the recipient. Chemotherapy, while necessary in many cases, also brings along with it a wide range of symptoms and side effects. Depending on the type of treatment and type of cancer being treated, side effects can include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, infection, and more.
At just age 32, Kim Buettner was diagnosed with breast cancer. She began chemotherapy treatment, and endured many of its side effects. Often times, doctors will prescribe medications to deal with individual side effects. But sometimes they don’t work, as they didn’t for Kim.
“I tried a lot of the other options that they gave me, but it just wasn’t working,” Kim said. “So, one of the treatment suggestions they provided was acupuncture.”
Acupuncture is an approved treatment for chemotherapy side effects by the American Cancer Society, and for good reason. Many of the body’s reactions to chemotherapy are due to the body’s energy being thrown out of whack.
“It sends a signal up to the brain and the brain secretes out opioids, a natural pain killer. Or endorphins,” said Dr. Quang Lee, who treated Kim. “It helps shifts your mood or relax you.”
“I know it’s making a difference,” Kim said.
It’s making a difference for Kim because licensed acupuncturists can create treatments to specifically treat the side effects each patient is experiencing. By creating specialized and targeted treatments, acupuncture can correct, recalibrate and restore the body’s energy. With consistent treatment, symptoms will reduce.
That makes a huge difference for those who are in their fight against cancer. While acupuncture will not sure the disease, it can greatly improve the quality of life for patients who have to endure chemotherapy. If you or someone you know is suffering from side effects due to chemotherapy, acupuncture is here to help.