Author(s): DiGianni LM, Garber JE, Winer EP
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Abstract Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) use has increased in recent years, with at least 42\% of individuals in the United States using some form of CAM in 1997. CAM includes a variety of modalities, ranging from nutritionally based interventions to behavioral techniques. This article reviews the status of CAM use among women with breast cancer. Patients are increasingly incorporating CAM into cancer prevention and treatment regimens. The prevalence of CAM use by breast cancer patients varies; however, it is typically higher than among individuals in the general population. Commonly used CAMs among women with breast cancer include nutritional/dietary supplements, relaxation strategies, and various types of social support groups. Apart from psychosocial interventions, little scientific evidence exists regarding the efficacy of CAM use for breast cancer patients. A common theme seen in many studies is that CAM use in women with breast cancer is highly correlated with increased psychosocial distress.
This article was published in J Clin Oncol
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