Chair massage for carers in an acute cancer hospital

Eur J Oncol Nurs. 2005 Jun;9(2):167-79. doi: 10.1016/j.ejon.2005.03.005.


The Chair Massage service considered in this evaluation study was provided to carers, visiting in-patients at a major cancer hospital in the UK. The two-stage evaluation comprised: firstly, a retrospective review of treatment records for the previous 12 months (n=182), and secondly, a prospective study, gathering data by interview and a 'next-day' questionnaire from carers (n=34), during 1 week of service delivery. The study at both stages sought to identify who used the service, post-treatment comments and changes in scores using a Feeling Good Thermometer (Field, T., 2000. Touch Therapy. Churchill Livingstone, London). During the second stage the carers were also asked about their concerns and worries, and to report changes in physical and emotional states using visual scales. Findings included significant improvements in physical and psychological scores; these were retained through to the next day. The next-day questionnaire also reported improved sleep for the majority of carers. A number of concerns and worries were raised at interview, notably anxieties about the patient and uncertainty about the future, family and financial worries. Overall, the service was well evaluated with parents and in particular female carers appearing to gain the most from the intervention.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cancer Care Facilities
  • Caregivers / psychology*
  • Emotions
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Massage*
  • Mental Health*
  • Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Psychological Tests
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Factors