Holistic Care and Treatments Sample

Holistic Care and Treatments Sample

Holistic Care and Treatments: Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) in Cancer Treatment

The use of naturally occurring non-biomedical therapies is what is referred to as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) (Harikumar, 2017, p. 174; Tovey et al., 2007, p. 1). According to Rossi et al. (2015), the complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs) that are most used for cancer patients in Europe include acupuncture (55.3 %), homeopathy (40.4 %), herbal medicine (38.3 %) and traditional Chinese medicine (36.2 %). These CAMs are usually used as supportive therapies to the more traditional modes of biomedical treatment for cancer, like chemotherapy. They are useful in controlling symptoms and adverse chemical consequences of cancer treatment. However, one main challenge faced by nurses in providing these alternative therapies for patient care is evidence. The nurse has to counsel the patient and convince them with empirical evidence that the therapies actually work. Holistic Care and Treatments Sample


            According to Klafke et al. (2016), oncology nurses can provide “CAM nursing intervention based on a theoretical concept, evidence-based studies, and practical nursing experience targeting the prevention or relief of side-effects [patients] suffer during chemotherapy.” Therefore, the nurse has a very wide latitude of integrating CAM interventions and approaches in cancer treatment. What the nurse needs is a sound basis for evidence-based intervention. She must research on the CAM measures for empirical evidence of efficacy. The ethical issues that may arise are concerned with the fact that these measures are not conventional. Hence it may not be known how they can adversely affect the patient. As such, the main elements to use in a teaching plan for nurses in CAM for cancer treatment are rationale, benefits, and evidence of efficacy. Hence the shared role of the nurse and patient in developing care plans lies in the nurse providing information and counselling, and the patient showing willingness and trust in the nurse’s judgement and holistic care.


Dimitrelis, S., Perry, L., Gallagher, R., Duffield, C., Sibbritt, D., Nicholls, R., and Xu, X.             (2017). Does Nurses’ Role, Health or Symptoms Influence their Personal Use of Ingestible Complementary and Alternative Medicines? Complementary Therapies in      Medicine, 35, 39-46. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2017.08.017Holistic Care and Treatments Sample

Harikumar, K.B. (Ed.) (2017). Complementary and Alternative Medicines in Prostate       Cancer: A Comprehensive Approach. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Klafke, N., Mahler, C., von Hagens, C., Blaser, G., Bentner, M., and Joos, S. (2016).        Developing and implementing a complex Complementary and Alternative (CAM)   nursing intervention for breast and gynecologic cancer patients undergoing        chemotherapy—report from the CONGO (complementary nursing in gynecologic           oncology) study [Abstract].  Supportive Care in Cancer, 24(5), 2341–2350.  DOI:    https://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-015-3038-5

Rossi, E., Vita, A., Baccetti, S., Di Stefano, M., Voller, F., and Zanobini, A. (2015).          Complementary and alternative medicine for cancer patients: results of the EPAAC        survey on integrative oncology centres in Europe [Abstract]. Supportive Care in           Cancer, 23(6), 1795–1806. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-014-2517-4

Tovey, P., Chatwin, J., and Broom, A. (2007). Traditional, Complementary and Alternative         Medicine and Cancer Care: An international analysis of grassroots integration. New           York, NY: Routledge. Holistic Care and Treatments Sample

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