Marilyn Finn | Chris O'Brien Lifehouse
 In Patient Stories

A lung cancer patient’s experience of reflexology

Marilyn Finn was diagnosed with lung cancer in November 2013. She had surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy – “a quick but tough chemo regime” – and was feeling pretty low at the end of it. “Treatment makes you tired and nauseated, my hair fell out and I lost the feeling in my feet. I didn’t sleep well either – you don’t, going through something like that,” she said.

It was during one of her long days in chemotherapy that she first met our reflexologist, Gretel Spiegel. “Gretel would come up to the chemo area and ask patients if they would like to try reflexology.

“It was a very pleasant thing to do. It broke up a long day. I used to get here at 8.30am and be here until six or seven o’clock at night. I thought I’d give myself a treat when I’d finish treatment. It’s just really nice,” she said.

Reflexology is a type of pressure-point massage based on the idea that there are areas on the hands, feet, face and ears connected to specific organs and glands in your body. Applying pressure and soothing techniques to these areas can have a healing effect on the relevant organs and assist the body’s self-healing ability. This is achieved by restoring energy flow that may have been blocked due to stress, toxins, illness, emotions or injury.

Marilyn found the reflexology helped the neuropathy in her feet: “It’s like walking on sandpaper blocks. The reflexology relieves the feeling in my feet for at least 24 hours.”

Gretel sees many patients who are undergoing or have finished treatment for cancer: “Patients often find that reflexology helps them to manage common symptoms and side effects, like anxiety, pain and stress. They often say it improves their state of mind as well.

“On my suggestion Marilyn booked three consecutive weekly treatments to give her body the opportunity to experience any changes from the reflexology treatments such as improved sleep, increased energy and improved feelings of wellbeing.”

If you would like to make an appointment to see Gretel, call the LivingRoom on 8514 0038 or email livingroom@lh.org.au.

To read more about reflexology, including recent research, click here: http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/…/com…/therapies/reflexology

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