Breast Health Center

Complementary Therapies

Complementary therapies are used with (not in place of) conventional medicine. A primary example is the use of acupuncture alongside standard medical care to help lessen pain in patients. Other forms of complementary therapies include aromatherapy, Reiki, pet therapy and yoga.

Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare believes that complementary therapies cultivate the healing of the mind, body and spirit — a vital component to bringing our Planetree philosophy of care to life for patients.


Acupuncture is a form of complementary medicine that is offered to help control and provide relief from side effects and symptoms such as pain, anxiety, energy deficiency, nausea and vomiting that can occur from standard breast cancer treatments.

Sessions are typically gentle and painless, and are scheduled alongside traditional breast cancer treatments for maximum efficacy.

The benefits of acupuncture — a 3000 year-old form of medicine — have been experienced first-hand by breast cancer patients worldwide for years.

How Acupuncture Works
Acupuncture needles are inserted at certain body points to help control pain, discomfort and other symptoms by increasing endorphins and the transmission of serotonin. While applications involve needles, they do not hurt or feel like shots. Treatments typically last 3–6 weeks, and may be resumed if needed.

The Effect on Breast Cancer
While acupuncture isn’t a known cure for breast cancer, numerous modern medical journals, scientific publications and conferences extol its virtues for quelling the side effects of traditional breast cancer treatments. Because of this, many breast cancer patients currently seek acupuncture at renowned hospitals, medical facilities and cancer treatment centers worldwide.

Learn More About Acupuncture
Contact Elmhurst Hematology Oncology Associates at (630) 758-8640 or visit to learn more and discover if our acupuncture services are right for you.

Reiki Therapy

Reiki is a complementary, holistic healing practice intended to promote the balance of energy in the body — and it’s been found to help patients relax, reduce stress levels, relieve pain, and improve mental clarity and sleep habits.

The session is safe, gentle and noninvasive, and is used to enhance the effectiveness of conventional medical treatment.

Caregivers also find benefits in Reiki therapy.

How Reiki Works
Reiki practitioners place their hands over or lightly on a person’s body and release the energy that supports the body’s natural healing abilities. The sessions that we offer take about 15 to 20 minutes.

Sessions Are Free
If you’re a cancer patient or a caregiver, you can take advantage of the free Reiki sessions that we offer. Visit the Cancer Center at Elmhurst Memorial’s Berteau campus, 200 Berteau Avenue, Elmhurst, on the first, third or fourth Wednesday of each month from 10 am to 1 pm. No appointment is necessary

Learn More About Reiki
The Reiki Share Project provides our volunteer Reiki practitioners. It is also an excellent resource to learn more about this complementary therapy. Visit


Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare Network

This site is part of the Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare network of Web sites, which covers a variety of topics using the same philosophy: When it comes to medical care, we know that you have a lot of options. And we want you to know that you're more than a patient to us. You're an individual. We would appreciate the opportunity to provide you with state-of-the-art medical care and down-to-earth, personalized attention.

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