Many parents of kids with chronic conditions are weary of relying too heavily on medications or other treatments to manage pain. Fortunately, there are natural, safe ways to reduce pain and improve your child’s quality of life–through St. Albans massage therapy and spinal care.

Spinal adjustments and massage therapy are just two types of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) used to treat chronic illnesses.. A recent study sought to investigate the prevalence and type of CAM treatments used by paediatric oncology outpatients.

The survey was conducted at two hospitals in Canada. The researchers asked young patients – or their parents or guardians – about their utilisation of CAM treatments. The survey, published in the journal “Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine,” focused on previous and current use of CAM practices by 129 pediatric oncology patients and their families.

The researchers found that 60.5% of the patients made use of complementary or alternative medicine treatments. Among those who did not make use of CAM treatments, the most commonly reported reason was lack of knowledge about such treatments.

Among patients making use of CAM, the most common type of CAM product utilised was multivitamins, at 86.5%, followed by vitamin C, cold remedies, teething remedies, and calcium. Among CAM practices, the most common was faith healing, at 51%. This was followed by massage (utilised by 46.8%), chiropractic (27.7%) and relaxation (25.5%).

Forty percent of patients reported using CAM products in conjunction with prescription medications. The researchers noted that “CAM use was high among patients at two academic paediatric oncology clinics. Although most respondents felt that their CAM use was helpful, many were not discussing it with their physicians.”

Our St. Albans massage therapists strongly believe in the effectiveness of massage therapy for relieving the symptoms of many chronic conditions. This new research adds to our knowledge of the many benefits of massage therapy, with nearly half of the paediatric oncology patients surveyed reporting that they make use of massage therapy treatments. If you are interested in learning more about how massage therapy may alleviate your symptoms, contact our spinal specialists at St. Albans Spinal Wellness Centre today.


Valji R, et al. Complementary and alternative medicine: a survey of its use in pediatric oncology. Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2013;