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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is oncology massage?

    I have heard about oncology massage but I don't know how it's different to normal massage, and I would like to know if it's safe for people with cancer to have.
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • 2


    Janice Bartley

    Massage Therapist, Western Herbal Medicine Practitioner

    Janice Bartley is a university qualified Medical Herbalist who fosters an evidence-based integrative approach to healthcare. Integrative healthcare focuses on the complexities of each individual’s … View Profile

    Oncology massage is not only safe for people who have been diagnosed with cancer, but it is an integral part of modern multidisciplinary cancer care and is scientifically proven to achieve major reductions in the levels of pain and anxiety associated with cancer. It may also help to significantly reduce fatigue, nausea, and depression as well as improve quality of sleep.

    Oncology massage is a very light and very gentle form of touch, it does not penetrate into the deep tissue layers of the body nor does it attempt to manipulate muscle. It is a soothing, relaxing and replenishing treatment and can be given with or without oil depending on the clients needs and thresholds.

    Oncology massage therapists are skilled in understanding the treatment process, the physical challenges, and the emotional journey of people experiencing cancer. An oncology massage therapist is also trained to make adjustments for side-effects of treatments, side-effects of the disease itself, and also to make adjustments for medical devices, surgery and tumor sites.

    Australia now has a national database of fully qualified oncology massage therapists who are trained to international standards, you can find a therapist near you by visiting

  • Bowel Cancer Australia is the leading community-funded charity dedicated to prevention, early diagnosis, research, quality treatment and care for everyone affected by bowel cancer. We … View Profile

    Thank you very much for your enquiry.

    Due to the detailed nature of your question, it is quite difficult to answer in an online forum.

    If you'd like to send your question through to Bowel Cancer Australia's Nurse Adviser we'd be very happy to get in contact with you to provide an individualised response and advice.

    You can send your question to us using the web form available at

    In the meantime you may also be interested to read some of the information available on the Bowel Cancer Australia website including:

    • Bowel Cancer: Diagnosis -
    •Bowel Cancer: Tests and Investigations -
    • Bowel Cancer: Surgery & Treatment -
    •Living with bowel cancer -
    •Bowel cancer: What I Need to Ask -

    We look forward to receiving your question and to offering you some tailored advice.

    Kind regards

    The team at Bowel Cancer Australia

    Please Note: The information provided by Bowel Cancer Australia’s Nurse and Nutritionist Advisory Services is intended for Australian residents as a reference guide only. It is not a substitute for independent professional advice and is not intended to be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease or disorder.

    If you believe your symptoms are consistent with those of bowel cancer or a digestive illness, please consult your doctor.

    Bowel Cancer Australia, its directors, officers or medical professionals shall not be liable to any person, company or any other body for any loss, direct or indirect or consequential on whatsoever account for any omission or negligent misstatement.

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