A review of curanderismo and healing practices among Mexicans and Mexican Americans

Occup Ther Int. 2009;16(1):82-8. doi: 10.1002/oti.265.


Occupational therapists working with Mexican and Mexican American populations may encounter traditional healing practices associated with curanderismo within a variety of practice settings. Curanderismo is a term referring to the practice of traditional healing in Latin American (Hispanic) cultures. This article reviews from the literature the different types of traditional healers (curanderos/as), the remedies recommended by traditional healers and common traditional illnesses treated. Traditional healing practices among Mexican and Mexican Americans may be as high as 50-75% in some parts of the United States. Further research is needed to investigate the effectiveness of curanderismo and its impact on quality of life, activities of daily living and overall social participation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Indians, North American*
  • Medicine, Traditional*
  • Mexican Americans*
  • Mexico
  • Spiritual Therapies*