Having worked for many years treating people with cancer, Fanny Roque has now started a special training course for Shiatsu practitioners wishing to do likewise.
The emphasis is on practice, and above all how to reduce the side effects of treatment in an effective way at each stage of the medical treatment, but also which kind of movements to avoid. To increase the intensity of the training, people undergoing chemotherapy treatment are invited to receive Shiatsu from the trainees.
In the Spotlight
Fanny Roque is currently President of the French Federation of Traditional Shiatsu (FFST).
Trained in Zen Shiatsu, she has been accompanying cancer patients for many years, notably at the Ligue Contre le Cancer and the Institut du Sein d’Aquitaine at the Tivoli Clinic in Bordeaux.
Since 2020, Fanny has been training and accompanying nurses and care assistants in Shiatsu oncology at the polyclinic of Bordeaux Nord and presenting Shiatsu at conferences for health professionals.
2022 was a new step in her training activity: she decided to transmit her knowledge to Shiatsu practitioners and now offers specialist courses in Shiatsu for cancer.
La Ligue Contre le Cancer and the Institut du Sein d’Aquitaine selected fifteen people with breast, stomach or blood cancer, and invited them to receive Shiatsu. 12 of them had an initial cancer, and were undergoing treatment either with oral or intravenous chemotherapy, while 3 of them were experiencing recurrence of stage 3 breast cancer (with metastasis).
First, a specific and detailed medical history was taken, including: type of cancer; stage in the medical treatment; pain scale and frequency; emotional state and side effects related to the type of chemotherapy. The Shiatsu practitioners then explained what Shiatsu during cancer is and gave a treatment.
Shiatsu work during chemotherapy includes:
- Powerful mobilisation of the shoulder blades and paravertebral muscles to soothe headaches
- Thoroughly working with the digestive system to contain Rebellious Qi, disperse Heat and root Kidney Yin
- Ampuku Zukai techniques, with Stomach meridian and Chong Mai to reduce nausea and calm digestive disorders
- Work on the spine and Du Mai, the seat of the nervous system, and localized work on the affected areas, usually fingertips and toes, to resolve paraesthesia.
The Shiatsu practitioners then showed acupuncture points for self-stimulation during and after chemotherapy:
- Pc 6 and St 36 for nausea
- Liv 3 and GB 14 for headache
- LI 4 and interdigital points for paraesthesia
Following these sessions, the participants showed immediate improvement in back pain, significant emotional relaxation and a reduction in side effects associated with chemotherapy, including a reduction of more than 4 points out of 10 for nausea and paresthesia.
A single Shiatsu session can have a considerable effect on the reduction of chemotherapy-related symptoms. Experience shows that the closer to the time of chemotherapy, the more significantly Shiatsu reduces side effects.