In an editorial entitled “Alternative Therapy for Breast Cancer: Outcomes, Obstacles and Opportunities” published in the April 2011 issue of Annals of Surgical Oncology, author Sheldon Marc Feldman, MD, FACS, and Chief of Breast Surgical Oncology at New York’s Columbia University Medical Center discusses research that supports his rationale for inviting Reiki practitioners to assist with his breast cancer patients. His article presents a scientifically supported view as to why patients require more than just traditional Western medicine in order to face cancer. He states unequivocally that patients who are resistant to receiving the proven life-saving treatments of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation are much more likely to accept these traditional treatments when they are being offered in partnership with alternative healing methods, thereby increasing their chances for survival from their disease. I quote Dr. Feldman here:
At Columbia, we have initiated a study that incorporates the role of Reiki practitioners in applying mind–body principles and energy healing to help to prepare patients for breast cancer surgery and emotionally accept the loss of their breast(s). We must continue to strive to provide care that is patient-centered and reduces the stress and trauma of disease.