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Acupuncture can relieve the pain of breast cancer care

By Robert Preidt

HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Dec. 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) – Some common medications against breast cancer may trigger joint pain, but new research suggests that acupuncture may relieve that side effect.

"Thehalf could be beneficial for patients with cancer," said a coroner who reviewed the study

"Acupuncture has been around for thousands of years and has no real drawback," said Dr. Lauren Cassell, chief of breast surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

"If something as simple as acupuncture can improve these symptoms and the quality of life for patients, we will have more women who comply with their medications, and we would expect improvement results," Cassell added.

The new study was led by Dr. Dawn Hershman, who directs the Breast Cancer Program at NewYork-Presbyterian / Columbia University Medical Center, also in New York City.

Hershman's team followed 226 postmenopaus results "These drugs, which include Arimidex, Femara, and Aromasin, among others, are often used to treat women with breast tumors sensitive to estrogen," he said. Hershman

But he added that "many patients suffer from side effects that make them lose treatments or stop treatment altogether." We need to identify strategies to control these side effects, the most common is pain and stiffening of the debilitating joints. "

Hershman's team wondered if the ancient practice of acupuncture could help. 110 received real acupuncture, 59 received false acupuncture (needles placed in ineffective places of the body) and another 57 were placed on a waiting list.

Patients in the true and false acupuncture groups underwent twice-over sessions. week for six weeks, followed by one session per week for six more weeks.

After six weeks, patients in the true acupuncture group reported much lower pain scores than those in the fake acupuncture groups or list of wait, the Hershman team reported.

The study was scheduled for presentation Thursday at the Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. ntonio, in Texas.

The finding may mean that women with pain related to the use of aromatase inhibitors could stay with their medications for longer if acupu The conference facilitates joint pain, "but we need to conduct more studies to determine if This is really the case, "Hershman said in a press release from the meeting.


Meanwhile, the findings suggest that "medical care physicians should discuss the possibility of acupuncture with patients experiencing joint pain and stiffness related to the aromatase inhibitor, because it has the potential to improve their quality of life, "said Hershman.

Dr. Cynara Coomer runs the Florina Rusi-Marke Comprehensive Breast Center at the University Hospital of Staten Island in New York City. Upon reading the findings, she agreed that "the integration of Western and Eastern medicine is an important way to explore" in breast cancer care.

And with a crisis of opioid addiction in the United States, "it is important for doctors to find other means of pain control for our patients," he added.

"This is another study that reveals the benefits of acupuncture in the treatment of pain," said Coomer.

Study findings presented at medical meetings should be considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

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SOURCES: Lauren S. Cassell, MD, chief of breast surgery, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; Cynara Coomer, M.D., head of breast surgery, director of the Florina Rusi-Marke Comprehensive Breast Center, Staten Island University Hospital, New York City; San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, press release, December 7, 2017

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