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Enhancing Cancer CareComplementary therapy and support$
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Jennifer Barraclough

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199297559

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199297559.001.0001

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(p.193) Chapter 17 Homeopathy
Enhancing Cancer Care

Elizabeth A Thompson

Oxford University Press

The homeopathic approach is underpinned by the philosophy that each person is unique and may benefit from an individualised prescription. Remedies can be derived from animal, mineral, or plant sources. Consultation style is patient led, symptom or problem orientated, and benefits from sensitive listening skills and an innate curiosity on the part of the prescriber to discover the nature of the problem. This process can resemble a palliative care approach — collecting information on patient concerns and symptoms and taking into consideration the social, spiritual, and psychological aspects that contribute to the human response to suffering. The evidence base for homeopathy in the cancer setting is still in its infancy but a systematic review suggests that cancer patients have benefited from homeopathic interventions, specifically for chemotherapy-induced stomatitis, radiodermatitis, and symptoms of oestrogen withdrawal in breast cancer survivors. This chapter describes the preparation of homeopathic medicines, laboratory and clinical research on homeopathy, problems encountered using the homeopathic approach, and homeopathy as part of the National Health Service of the United Kingdom.

Keywords:   National Health Service, homeopathy, cancer, cancer patients, palliative care, homeopathic medicines, stomatitis, radiodermatitis, oestrogen withdrawal

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