Complementary Therapies

Complementary Therapies

Complementary therapies are therapeutic practices that are not currently considered standard medical practice. They are often discussed under a heading of Complementary and Alternative Medicines (CAM).

The difference between complementary therapies and alternative therapies is that complementary therapies are used together with standard medical practice while alternative therapies are used instead of standard medical practice.

Some examples of complementary therapies are:

  • Acupuncture
  • Tai Chi
  • Qi Gong
  • Yoga
  • Dance therapy
  • Massage
  • Music

Note: Anyone considering CAM therapies should talk with their healthcare team first. While complementary therapies have been studied, and some may possibly help individuals deal with side effects, there is little evidence to show they are effective against pancreatic cancer itself. In fact, some may interfere with standard treatment or even be harmful.

For an overview of complementary therapies, including definitions and safety issues, visit the National Cancer Institute website.

For a discussion of complementary therapies, including questions to ask your healthcare team and cost considerations, visit the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network website.

You may also be interested in the American Cancer Society's class "Keeping Well in Mind, Body, and Spirit.”

These links are to third-party websites.