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Smilow Integrative Medicine Program

Integrative medicine focuses on the whole person, is informed by evidence, and seeks to complement cancer therapy with appropriate therapeutic and lifestyle approaches to achieve optimal health and healing. Smilow Cancer Hospital’s Integrative Medicine Program provides evidence-based guidance about a wide range of complementary therapies commonly used by cancer patients and survivors. 

Our program aims to address the serious physical and emotional symptoms often experienced by patients before, during, and after cancer therapy. Our team has expertise in the practice and evaluation of complementary medicine, and can guide patients to make effective decisions on integrative therapies throughout their treatment program and beyond. We collaborate closely with each patient’s oncology care team to provide safe and effective care.

Our Services

Integrative medicine consultations 

Integrative medicine clinical consultations provide guidance for the safe use of dietary supplements/natural products, acupuncture, massage, meditation, and other complementary therapies. 

Creative Expression 

Creative expression offers a variety of artistic outlets that provide a unique therapeutic experience. A broad spectrum of classes, workshops and virtual engagement provide the opportunity to explore various art techniques and creative writing projects, as well as to contribute to meaningful collaborative installations and exhibits.

Massage

Experienced and licensed therapists are trained in oncology massage, focusing on mitigating side effects from cancer and its treatment. Research has shown that massage therapy may reduce pain, promote relaxation, and boost mood in cancer patients. 

Reiki 

Reiki is a complementary health approach in which practitioners place their hands lightly on or just above a person, with the goal of facilitating the person’s own healing response. This is to promote relaxation and produce stress-reduction effects. 

Bedside yoga

Yoga is a mind and body practice with origins in ancient Indian philosophy, combining breathing techniques, physical postures, meditation, and relaxation. Patients can receive individual bedside yoga therapy, adapted to individual needs and limitations.

Group Sessions

Gentle yoga

Group classes incorporate breathing techniques, physical postures, meditation, and relaxation, adapted to patient needs and limitations.

T’ai Chi/Qigong

T’ai Chi/Qigong is a centuries-old martial art and energy practice that uses gentle movement through postures to help promote mental focus, breathing, and relaxation. Students are taught the fundamentals of breath work, movement, and postures that develop into the T’ai-Chi form. The benefits are improved strength, mobility, alignment, pain control, and overall physical and mental rejuvenation.

Meditation 

Meditation is a mind and body practice that has a long history of increasing calmness and physical relaxation, improving psychological balance, and enhancing overall health and well-being. Patients can receive instruction from a trained practitioner or from guided meditation CDs that are available in our Patient and Family Resource Center.

Chair-Based Exercise

This mind/body modality is based on the spinal alignment and efficient joint and muscle movement to promote strength and flexibility. It allows for seated and standing movements in and out of a chair, and the use of a chair as needed. Participants will range from those with balance issues who may need the assistance of a chair to those able to move about freely.