Click here to view a short, 7-minute video about our program on YouTube.
Care For The Whole Person
Call 303-415-7292 for more information about our services and to schedule an appointment.
The Center for Integrative Care, located in the Tebo Family Medical Building on the Foothills Medical Campus, provides the following care for the person with cancer during and after active cancer treatment:
Additionally, our complementary care treatments (massage, acupuncture, Reiki, and healing touch) are available for the benefit of family members and other caregivers of those with cancer. Massage, reflexology and healing touch are also offered in the chemo infusion area.
We can bill your insurance company if you have any of these treatments as a covered benefit.
These therapies have been proven in clinical research to be safe and effective for:
- improving post-operative wound healing
- promoting deep relaxation to boost the body's own power to heal
- reducing the need for pain medication
- reducing symptoms resulting from chemotherapy and radiation therapy
- decreasing stress
- improving clinical outcomes
Integrative care is also known by other names, including complementary medicine, alternative medicine, complementary healing and adjunctive care.
Our staff consists of experienced, oncology-trained, certified and licensed practitioners, trained in safe, evidence-based complementary care practices but also having thorough knowledge of conventional cancer treatment. Our team works in collaboration with Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers practitioners and other members of the healthcare team toward the goal of obtaining the best outcome for each individual.
The Center for Integrative Care is primarily an outpatient care program. A physician order is preferred but not required. Integrative Care services are also available for those on the inpatient cancer care unit of Foothills Hospital with a physician or nurse referral. Treatments can also be requested in a cancer-related outpatient service, such as Imaging or Surgery, and a physician or nurse order is required. Home-based palliative care is also available.
To schedule an appointment or to obtain more information regarding our services, hours of operation, and fees please call our Patient Service Coordinator at 303-415-7292.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of extremely thin needles through your skin, to various depths at strategic points on your body. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, health results from a harmonious balance between the complementary extremes (yin and yang) of the life force known as qi or chi. Qi is believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. These meridians and the energy flow are accessible through more than 350 acupuncture points. Illness results from an imbalance of the forces. By inserting needles into these points in various combinations, acupuncture practitioners rebalance the energy flow of the body. Studies indicate that acupuncture offers relief for a variety of diseases and conditions, including low back pain, headaches, fibromyalgia, migraines and osteoarthritis. In addition, research shows acupuncture can help alleviate chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.
Healing Touch was developed by Janet Mentgen, RN, BSN (1938-2005) during her nursing career. The practitioner identifies imbalances and corrects a person's energy by using light touch over main energy centers and passing his or her hands over the fully clothed patient. Healing Touch employs a collection of energy based treatment techniques to assess and treat the energy system, thus affecting physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health and healing.
Lymphedema is a potentially serious side effect of cancer treatment (surgery and radiation) and is the body's reaction to having lymph nodes removed: the lymphatic system drains the body of excess fluid and when this is disrupted, as when nodes are removed, there is the potential for poor drainage leading to swelling of arms, legs, face, neck, and other body parts. We have massage therapists that are also Certified Lymphedema Therapists (CLT) who can educate, evaluate and effectively treat lymphedema complications from cancer treatment. Many times this treatment is done in collaboration with physical therapists from the Boulder Community Health Cancer Rehab team.
Click here for more information about lymphedema risk, symptoms and precautions from the National Lymphedema Network.
For many years, cancer was thought to be a contraindication to massage for fear of metastases. New research has shown that the development and spread of cancer cells inside the body has much more to do with genetic causes and not as much with the movement of blood and lymph within the body. However, deep tissue massage, which is known to create an inflammatory response, is contraindicated.Therapists trained in oncology massage are knowledgeable in the disease symptoms and side affects of the cancer treatments. They are able to adapt the pressure, length of a session, positioning, and understand the need for a less demanding treatment. Gentle oncology massage can bring great relief to many physical symptoms such as insomnia, pain, fatigue, nausea, neuropathy, and bring calmness or stimulation to the nervous system. On an emotional level, massage can provide a person with the restoration of confidence, relief of touch deprivation, the space to be and express, without fear or judgment, their feelings through their cancer journey and most of all, to be treated as a whole person: body, mind and spirit.
Morrell Reflex Touch is a new form of reflexology developed by Patricia Morrell in the UK. She developed this gentle yet powerful technique which uses all the existing reflex points in the feet, then added a few more and refined it to the most subtle degree of touch and sensibility. The original heavy pressure of traditional reflexology is replaced with an extremely light touch. It is a treatment that encompasses the internal organs, body systems and the electromagnetic field enabling a balanced energy flow throughout the body. This in turn allows each and every cell in the body to work more efficiently.
Reiki is a healing practice that originated in Japan. Reiki practitioners place their hands lightly on or just above the person receiving treatment, with the goal of facilitating the person's own healing response. Reiki is based on the idea that there is a universal (or source) energy that supports the body's innate healing abilities. Practitioners seek to access this energy, allowing it to flow to the body and facilitate healing. Reiki can be useful for deep relaxation, stress reduction, relief from chronic pain and anxiety, and to improve overall health and well-being. It is also beneficial in recovery from surgery and decreasing the side effects from cancer treatments. Reiki has also been given to people who are dying (and to their families and caregivers) to help impart a sense of peace.
The following articles provide more information about the practice and benefit of Reiki:
Reiki and Breast Cancer
Cancer, Surgery and...Reiki
Reiki Complements Traditional Medicine
Wellness and Integrative Care Consultation with a Registered Nurse
Every patient has the opportunity to do a personalized consult with the Integrative Care RN to review medical history, current concerns, and treatment options for managing the side effects of cancer treatment. Our nurse has extensive training and education in current oncology medicine practice, use of integrative therapies, and holds an Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN) designation. The OCN qualifies the nurse to educate patients in all the following areas as it pertains to their cancer diagnosis, treatment and recovery:
- Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
- Screening, Early Detection and Diagnosis
- Scientific Basis for Practice including Research
- Cancer Treatment Modalities
- Symptom Management
- Psychosocial Dimensions of Care
- Oncologic Emergencies
- End of Life Care
Stephen Corsale, Dipl. O.M., L.Ac., OTR
Stephen has worked in the healthcare field since 1982 in a variety of capacities and settings. He is nationally certified in the fields of Acupuncture, Oriental Medicine and Occupational Therapy. He has completed additional study in the area of oncology and Oriental Medicine, with a focus on providing treatments that are compatible with Western medical interventions and help improve patient outcomes. Stephen strives for a collaborative relationship with his patients, helping them prioritize their physical, mental and/or emotional needs.
Rachel Horner, M.Ac.OM, L.Ac.
Rachel is nationally board certified in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. She is also certified as a massage therapist, Qi Gong instructor and Jin Shin Do practitioner. Rachel earned her Master's degree from the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine in 2001. She spent two years exploring the applications of Oriental Medicine through independent research, internships and study throughout China, Korea and Thailand. Rachel's clinical experience includes private practice and integrative hospital environments in both China and the U.S. Rachel combines the principles of Chinese medicine to encourage the internal harmony that can help restore health and well-being.
Healing Touch, Reiki and Wellness and Integrative Care Consultations
Carol Hiesterman, RN, MSN, OCN
Carol began her nursing career in 1964 after graduating from a Diploma in Nursing program and acquiring her RN. She later returned to school and received her Master of Science Nursing in 1992. She has worked in several areas of nursing and has specialized in Oncology Nursing since 1993. She added energy healing to her nursing skills, learning Therapeutic Touch in 1983. Since then, she has added Level 2 Healing Touch to her skills and has become a Reiki Master. Energy healing fits nicely into Carol's belief that the job of nursing (as defined by Florence Nightengale) is to put the patient in the best situation for healing to occur. She believes that integrating the best of traditional medical care with energy healing supports the patient as they journey through cancer, allowing them to heal on a multitude of levels.
Carol also meets individually with patients interested in creating a complementary care treatment plan. She reviews medical history and makes recommendations based on the background and needs of each individual.
Massage Therapy and Manual Lymph Drainage
Nicola McGill, LLSA, NCBTMB, CLT
In 1997, Nicola completed her Complementary Healthcare training in London, England where she received a Diploma in Holistic Aromatherapy, Manual Lymph Drainage and Reflexology. Since residing in the USA she has received further education in Oncology Massage and in 2004 she became NCBTMB Certified. Nicola became a Certified Lymphedema Therapist through Klose Training in August 2010 and is specializing in breast cancer rehabilitation.
Ann Simmons, NCTMB, CMT, CLT
Ann has been working as a nationally certified massage therapist since 2004 with an emphasis on cancer and chronic illness. She has her certification in Oncology Massage and Lymphedema Therapy as well as training in Therapeutic Touch, Reiki, Reflexology and Manual Lymph Drainage techniques. The intention of her practice is to support people through their cancer journey from diagnosis to recovery with gentle, caring touch.
Hours of Operation
Appointments are scheduled Monday-Friday 8am-6pm.
Evening and weekend appointments may be available upon request.
We are located in the Tebo Family Medical Building on the Foothills Medical Campus.
Address: 4715 Arapahoe Ave Boulder CO 80303
Click here for map
Information and Scheduling: 303-415-7292
Services may be covered by insurance; we will check your benefits and eligibility upon request.
Information regarding financial assistance is also available upon request.
Gift certificates are available.
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Upcoming Talks and Classes
This 5-week seminar will focus on providing information and hands-on instruction in the use of acupressure points both as a preventative health tool and to help alleviate specific symptoms common to patients undergoing cancer treatment.
Call 303-415-7292 for schedule of upcoming classes and to register
Community Room, Tebo Family Medical Building
$80 (partners free; financial assistance available)
Facilitated by Stephen Corsale, Dipl.O.M., L.Ac
Community Room, first floor, at the Tebo Family Medical Building $15-$25 drop in; no pre-registration required, call for dates and times.
Call 303-415-7292 for more information
The Center for Integrative Care offers weekly drop-in acupuncture treatments in a group setting for anyone coping with cancer. This includes people undergoing active treatment, long term survivors, and family and friends providing active caregiving. Treatments are 20-30 minutes in length and are provided by licensed acupuncturists from the Center. All are welcome.
Nutrition education classes offer information, research and strategies to maintain health and wellness during and after active cancer treatment from a Registered Dietitian. Examples of topics covered include: building your immune system, strategies to work with fatigue and other treatment side effects, and estrogen controversies.
Call 303-415-7292 for information on cost, upcoming dates and topics
Reiki (pronounced ray-kee) is a healing practice that originated in Japan. It can be useful for deep relaxation, stress reduction, relief from chronic pain and anxiety, and to improve overall health and well-being. It is also beneficial in recovery from surgery and decreasing the side effects from cancer treatment. Reiki practitioners place their hands lightly on or just above the person receiving treatment in order to support the body's innate healing energy to flow and facilitate healing.
Individual sessions are offered ongoing in the Center for Integrative Care.
Reiki Level 1 group classes are offered periodically.
Please call our main information number, 303-415-7292, to inquire about both.
If cancer strikes you or a loved one, the first thing you want is some straight facts about the disease.
At the Tebo Family Medical Building, our Resource Center, located on the first floor, is the place to start. Our goal is to help cancer patients and their families get good solid information about the disease and its treatment options, whatever the diagnosis.
The Resource Center is staffed by trained and caring volunteers from the Grillo Health Information Center. You are welcome to request information by phone, email or stop in. A volunteer is avavailable onsite Monday - Thursday 9am-5pm to provide the following:
- Confidential research for your personal health questions
- Give you free access to the latest science-based medical information
- Help you make better decisions about your health
- Support your conversations with your doctor and improving health outcomes.
For more information:
Grillo Health Information Center
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“I have received acupuncture, massage and Reiki. These have been a tremendous boost to my immune system and mental health. The nerve pain has subsided, lymphedema is under control and my outlook has improved."
“I have lymphedema and fibromyalgia. All my improvements in my physical and psychological health I attribute to Reiki, acupuncture and massage at the Center. I have increased energy and sense of well-being, decrease in pain, increased mobility and most of all I appreciate the clarity I now have as a result of discussing medical and psychological issues with my practitioners.”
“The benefits have been physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. I have relief, a little at a time, from the pain both post-operative and whole –body and the edema. I have professional information of the highest caliber of what has happened to me, what the problems are on a week to week basis and what I may well have to anticipate in the future with the post-op complications and radiation reaction. The early part of my journey through cancer at a different facility left me feeling like just another case instead of a suffering person. The staff at the complementary center, each in his/her special way, helped me heal from that experience, bring closure to it and become secure enough to make new decisions about my health future. I have never felt more supported in my life. Spiritually, as the burdens fall away during treatment, I find myself becoming more capable of opening and attending to my spiritual self. I feel that the care I am getting here is not just equally important to the lumpectomy and radiation, but more important because it works to remind me of my wholeness. Lastly, it is also very supportive of strengthening my immune system, so that it can deal with the Lyme disease as well as the cancer.”
“Acupuncture helped my sleep disorder and gave me some energy.”
“I have experienced immense benefits from weekly acupuncture and either healing touch/Reiki or massage during chemo. My counts have remained high – I have been able to avoid white and red blood cell count booster shots!!! Symptoms are managed well, too.”
“The lymphedema massage has helped tremendously with the swelling in my right hand/arm. Reiki and acupuncture have helped with mood/depression, energy level and ability to sleep.”
“Acupuncture helps with the fluid retention and neuropathy. Integrative Care nurse and healing touch VERY helpful with anxiety, which helps with everything else.”
“The nerve pain has subsided, lymphedema is under control and my outlook has improved.”
“The treatments are very relaxing. Usually, the few days following treatment I feel more energized. The people I have come in contact with have all been wonderful and encouraging. I look forward to seeing them.”
“I have experienced benefits in stress management and menopausal symptoms.”
“My side effects seem much less. I don’t get nausea as often and am not as fatigued. This also helps my overall positive attitude.”
“Pain relief, increased energy, enhanced sense of well-being.”
“Reduction of pain, reduction of stress, increased stamina, general feeling of returning wellness, emotional and psychological support of Integrative Care Center team.”
“Relaxation and peace of mind!”
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