Alternative Therapies

Dealing with a disease like mesothelioma is difficult at any time, and it’s important to learn about your treatment options. Besides radiation, chemotherapy and surgery, there are alternative therapies available for you to consider that may aid in relieving symptoms of the disease and increasing your quality of life. Additionally, there is always new information on alternative therapies to treat mesothelioma available. Alternative therapies include:

Acupuncture – is the technique of inserting acupuncture needles into certain points on the body. Acupuncture reportedly originated in China, and is most commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine, although different types of acupuncture are taught and practiced throughout the world. The practice of acupuncture supposedly works to alleviate pain and restores health and well-being within the body.

Gene Therapy – is still in trial stages. Gene therapy involves the insertion of genes into ones cells, and is used especially in the treatment of hereditary diseases. Gene therapy works by switching deformed cells with functional cells. While animal testing has shown some success, clinical trials with humans haven’t shown the same positive results. However, with continued research gene therapy may be an important treatment in relieving symptoms of mesothelioma.

Massage –is the practice of applying pressure, tension, and motion, to the soft tissues of the body, including the muscles, tendons, lymphatic tissues and ligaments. Massage is a great method to increase circulation, at the same time as relieving stress and reducing pain, nausea and depression. Massage therapy is typically performed by a massage therapist but can also be administered by chiropractors and physical therapists.

Meditation - is a method often used to reduce a patient’s stress and pain and some say it will help boost the patient’s immune functions. Meditation typically involves the focusing of the mind and has been a component of Eastern religion for over 5,000 years. Meditation can be beneficial in personal development and can help patients to become mentally and physically healthier.

Multimodal Therapy – multiple common therapies combined into one treatment. For example, a combination of chemotherapy, radiation and surgery to maximize the benefits of each.

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) Therapy - This involves placing electrodes, connected to a tiny generator, along nerve pathways. The battery emits an electrical current to stimulate the brain to produce a morphine-like substance that reduces pain. There are a few side effects associated with this treatment, and TENS is considered by some to be a beneficial method of pain relief in palliative care. While there is little evidence to support the idea that TENS is highly effective, many patients have benefited from using TENS.

Herbs – Some herbs may help to slow down the progression of the disease. Others can help correct imbalance and boost the patient’s immune system. Still others can help the patient regain energy. As a general rule, herbal treatments complement tradition medicine rather than being taken instead of traditional medicine.

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