Integr Cancer Ther. 2012 (Dec); 11 (4): 304–312
Alcantara J, Alcantara JD, Alcantara J.
International Chiropractic Pediatric Association,
Life West College of Chiropractic,
Hayward, CA; and Private Practice of Chiropractic, San Jose, CA.
Background and Significance: Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide and accounted for 7.4 million deaths in 2004. By 2030, deaths from cancer have been estimated at 12 million with 30% being preventable. Complementary and alternative medicine remains popular among cancer patients; particularly with chiropractic services. However, the nature of the chiropractic clinical encounter and its reported benefits remains to be fully investigated. Towards these efforts, we begin with a systematic review of the literature on the chiropractic care of patients with cancer.
METHODS: The following electronic databases were searched: MANTIS [1965-2010]; Index to Chiropractic Literature [1984-2010]; Pubmed [1966-2010]; Medline [1965-2010] EMBASE [1974-2010], AMED [1975-2010], CINAHL Plus [1965-2010], Alt-Health Watch [1965-2010] and PsychINFO [1965-2010]. Key words used were "cancer" and "neoplasm" in Boolean combination with "chiropractic." Primary investigation/reports in peer-reviewed English journals involving chiropractic care were reviewed.
RESULTS: Our review revealed 60 case reports, 2 case series, 21 commentaries, 2 survey studies, and 2 literature reviews. The case reports were diagnostic with commentaries highlighting the importance of recognizing the patient presenting with NMS complaints due to an underlying neoplasm. The chiropractic clinical encounter prior to cancer diagnosis and subsequent medical referral is poorly characterized in the literature.
CONCLUSIONS: Patients with cancer seek the care of chiropractors. The literature does not reflect or describe the totality of the chiropractic clinical encounter. We encourage further research in this field.