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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 2503267, 9 pages
Research Article

Bioenergy and Breast Cancer: A Report on Tumor Growth and Metastasis

1College of Nursing, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, USA
2Department of Mathematical Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, USA

Received 24 March 2016; Revised 26 July 2016; Accepted 11 August 2016

Academic Editor: Lewis Mehl-Madrona

Copyright © 2016 Alice Running et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


As many as 80% of the 296,000 women and 2,240 men diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States will seek out complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments. One such therapy is Healing Touch (HT), recognized by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) as a treatment modality. Using a multiple experimental groups design, fifty-six six- to eight-week-old Balb/c mice were injected with 4T1 breast cancer tumor cells and randomly divided into intervention and positive control groups. Five days after tumor cell injection, mice in the intervention groups received HT either daily or every other day for 10 minutes by one HT practitioner. At 15 days after tumor cell injection, tumor size was measured, and metastasis was evaluated by a medical pathologist after necropsy. Tumor size did not differ significantly among the groups (, value = 0.53). The presence of metastasis did not differ across groups (chi-square(3) = 3.902, ) or when compared within an organ (liver: chi-square(3) = 2.507, ; lungs: chi-square(3) = 3.804, ; spleen: chi-square(3) = 0.595, ). However, these results did indicate a moderate, though insignificant, positive impact of HT and highlight the need for continued research into dose, length of treatment, and measurable outcomes (tumor size, metastasis) to provide evidence to suggest application for nursing care.