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WRA's mission is to promote excellence and professionalism in the practice of Reflexology in the State of Washington.

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  • Archive for May, 2011


    Reflexology at Evergreen Hospice
    Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

    Evergreen Hospice Compassionate Touch Program
    Submitted by Liz Pyle, WRA Board Member

    Earlier this year, I inquired about the possibility of volunteering as part of Evergreen Hospice’s Compassionate Touch program. The program had massage therapists and Reiki practioners, but no reflexologists.

    There were many different things that drew me to hospice; most of them personal but to my mind, reflexology would be a welcome addition to their palliative care program. In hospice, patients have a prognosis of 6 months or less to live and have opted out of curative care. Many suffer from pain, nausea and anxiety and are treated with prescription medications which may cause other symptoms.

    After my initial interview, a reference check, background check and health screening, I was scheduled to attend the required 25-hour training class in May. There were 18 people in the training class, and two of us were signed up to participate in the Compassionate Touch program. Training covers the philosophy and history of hospice care, medical ethics, confidentiality, spirituality at end of life, social boundaries, bereavement, as well as self-care.
    I was eager to start, but there were hoops to jump through. Unlike Reiki, a physician would need to sign-off before patients could receive a reflexology session. The hospice staff had full confidence in Reiki and had seen the benefit to the patients. I’d already completed Reiki I so decided to complete a Reiki II attunement which is what led to my first patient assignment. I asked if I could combine reflexology with Reiki because, as I explained, I was much more comfortable with reflexology.

    The hospice Reiki practitioners had done a good job of becoming an accepted modality by proving their value and gaining credibility. So I knew that I’d need to show rather than tell everyone about reflexology. I asked if I could meet with the hospice staff to provide short reflexology sessions to the coordinators, nurses, Social Workers and any staff members who were interested in learning about what reflexology could do for them and their patients. They agreed. I gave sixteen 20-minute sessions at the center. Now that the coordinators have realized how powerful reflexology is, no one has asked me to do Reiki again and now it’s easy to get physician approval. Last week one of the Evergreen Hospice coordinators informed me that they would like to have more reflexologists – one isn’t enough to cover all of the territory they serve.

    I am grateful to have this opportunity to educate the public, including those in traditional healthcare, about the power of reflexology.

    Liz Pyle

     

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    Become a ‘Fan’ of WRA on Facebook
    Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

    WRA now has a Facebook page!

    Click here to link to our Facebook page and ‘Like’ us. You’ll get reflexology tidbits, updates on research into the scientific benefits of reflexology, and notifications about upcoming WRA events.

    See you there.

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    Reflexology and Breast Cancer
    Monday, May 9th, 2011

    Researchers at Michigan State University are finding that many women who are receiving chemotherapy while in the late stages of breast cancer are turning to a complementary therapy known as reflexology to help them cope.

    In a pilot study, researchers from MSU’s College of Nursing tested three different complementary therapies – reflexology, guided imagery and reminiscence therapy, in which women recall times in their lives when they’ve met and overcome challenges. Of those three, reflexology proved to be the most effective.

    here is more from that article about the benefits of reflexology to women suffering late stage breast cancer.

    Women who are receiving chemotherapy for late-stage breast cancer face myriad physical and emotional issues. Reflexology – which is a specialized foot therapy that applies firm pressure to certain parts of the sole of the foot – helps women adjust better to their treatment. Reflexology can be used to support patients through treatment such as chemotherapy or for enhancing well-being for cancer-free individuals.

    “We see things like a decrease in depression and anxiety, and improvements in spirituality and emotional quality of life,” Wyatt said. “Overall, they have an improved quality of life.”

    We don’t really have a Western, scientific way of testing how this works. The mechanism is not clearly understood. But for us, we just measure the patient’s perception of change. Currently, there are no physiological measures,” she said.

    Wyatt stressed the reflexology and other similar therapies are strictly complementary, to be used in conjunction with conventional health care.

    “These supportive measures are intended to create a less stressful link for the patient to the treatment center,” Wyatt said. “Instead of dreading the next cancer treatment, patients are able to focus on the comfort measure that will be provided during treatment.”

    Wyatt and colleagues are now embarking on a more detailed investigation into the value of reflexology in treating late-stage breast cancer patients. Using a National Institutes of Health grant of more than $3 million, they will more closely examine the benefits of reflexology in a controlled study.

    original article here

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