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Complementary and alternative medicines 

Complementary and alternative medicines
Chapter:
Complementary and alternative medicines
Author(s):

Max Watson

, Rachel Campbell

, Nandini Vallath

, Stephen Ward

, and Jo Wells

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198745655.003.0025
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date: 22 August 2019

This chapter covers the underlying philosophy and the types of complementary therapies which are used with patients who have palliative care needs. Complementary and alternative medicines (CAM) comprise a diverse array of treatment modalities that are not presently considered part of conventional/mainstream medicine. CAM emphasize a holistic approach towards healthcare, i.e. they are based on the belief that mind, body, and spirit are interconnected, and that health depends on wholeness and balance between them. The individual therapies described in this chapter are considered under four headings: alternative medical concepts; mind-body interventions, biologically based therapies, and manipulative therapies. The chapter also looks at some of the evidence associated with such therapies.

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