Acupuncture in palliative care


Abstract:  Acupuncture involves the insertion of needles into designated acupuncture points to aid in the treatment of symptoms and to improve health. Materials and methods:  A survey was conducted in a tertiary palliative care unit where 50 patients with advanced cancer were surveyed to determine their understanding of, use of, and interest in acupuncture. Main results:  Twenty-seven (54%) patients provided an accurate understanding of acupuncture. Although only 30% of patients had previously used acupuncture to treat noncancer medical conditions and only 10% had used it for cancer related symptoms, 80% of patients were interested in seeing an acupuncture practitioner on the care unit if one was made available. Conclusions:  Although few advanced cancer patients on a tertiary palliative care unit had previously received acupuncture, many had a general understanding of this complementary therapy, and expressed an interest in seeing an acupuncture practitioner.


Supportive Care in Cancer


Volume 15, Number 8 / August, 2007

Resource Type:

Journal Article


Joan Faily and Doreen Oneschuk