Traditional and Complementary Medicine Use Among Indigenous Cancer Patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States

A Systematic Review

Alana Gall, Stuart Leske, Jon Adams, Veronica Matthews, Kate Anderson, Sheleigh Lawler, Gail Garvey

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

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    Abstract

    Background: Cancer ‘patients’ are increasingly using traditional indigenous and complementary medicines (T&CM) alongside conventional medical treatments to both cure and cope with their cancer diagnoses. To date T&CM use among Indigenous cancer patients from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States has not been systematically reviewed. 

    Methods: We systematically searched bibliographic databases to identify original research published between January 2000 and October 2017 regarding T&CM use by Indigenous cancer patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. Data from records meeting eligibility criteria were extracted and appraised for quality by 2 independent reviewers. 

    Results: Twenty-one journal articles from 18 studies across all 4 countries met our inclusion criteria. T&CM use ranged from 19% to 57.7% (differing across countries). T&CM was mostly used concurrently with conventional cancer treatments to meet their spiritual, emotional, social, and cultural needs; however, bush, traditional, and herbal medicines were used in a minority of cases as an alternative. 

    Conclusions: Our findings highlight the importance of T&CM use to Indigenous cancer patients across these 4 countries; we identified multiple perceived spiritual, emotional and cultural benefits to its use. The patient’s perception of their health professional’s attitudes toward T&CM in some cases hindered or encouraged the patient’s disclosure. Additional research is required to further explore the use and disclosure of T&CM among Indigenous cancer patients to help inform and ensure effective, safe, coordinated care for Indigenous cancer patients that relies on shared open decision making and communication across patients, communities, and providers.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)568-581
    Number of pages14
    JournalIntegrative Cancer Therapies
    Volume17
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2018

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    Traditional Medicine
    Complementary Therapies
    New Zealand
    Canada
    Neoplasms
    Disclosure
    Bibliographic Databases
    Attitude to Health
    Herbal Medicine
    Research
    Decision Making
    Communication
    Therapeutics

    Cite this

    Gall, Alana ; Leske, Stuart ; Adams, Jon ; Matthews, Veronica ; Anderson, Kate ; Lawler, Sheleigh ; Garvey, Gail. / Traditional and Complementary Medicine Use Among Indigenous Cancer Patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States : A Systematic Review. In: Integrative Cancer Therapies. 2018 ; Vol. 17, No. 3. pp. 568-581.
    @article{52e5d820d84a4af789f83a0ad979ce19,
    title = "Traditional and Complementary Medicine Use Among Indigenous Cancer Patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States: A Systematic Review",
    abstract = "Background: Cancer ‘patients’ are increasingly using traditional indigenous and complementary medicines (T&CM) alongside conventional medical treatments to both cure and cope with their cancer diagnoses. To date T&CM use among Indigenous cancer patients from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States has not been systematically reviewed. Methods: We systematically searched bibliographic databases to identify original research published between January 2000 and October 2017 regarding T&CM use by Indigenous cancer patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. Data from records meeting eligibility criteria were extracted and appraised for quality by 2 independent reviewers. Results: Twenty-one journal articles from 18 studies across all 4 countries met our inclusion criteria. T&CM use ranged from 19{\%} to 57.7{\%} (differing across countries). T&CM was mostly used concurrently with conventional cancer treatments to meet their spiritual, emotional, social, and cultural needs; however, bush, traditional, and herbal medicines were used in a minority of cases as an alternative. Conclusions: Our findings highlight the importance of T&CM use to Indigenous cancer patients across these 4 countries; we identified multiple perceived spiritual, emotional and cultural benefits to its use. The patient’s perception of their health professional’s attitudes toward T&CM in some cases hindered or encouraged the patient’s disclosure. Additional research is required to further explore the use and disclosure of T&CM among Indigenous cancer patients to help inform and ensure effective, safe, coordinated care for Indigenous cancer patients that relies on shared open decision making and communication across patients, communities, and providers.",
    keywords = "American Native Continental Ancestry Group, cancer, cancer care facilities, complementary therapies, Indigenous population, neoplasms, Oceanic Ancestry Group, traditional medicine",
    author = "Alana Gall and Stuart Leske and Jon Adams and Veronica Matthews and Kate Anderson and Sheleigh Lawler and Gail Garvey",
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    doi = "10.1177/1534735418775821",
    language = "English",
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    pages = "568--581",
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    Traditional and Complementary Medicine Use Among Indigenous Cancer Patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States : A Systematic Review. / Gall, Alana; Leske, Stuart; Adams, Jon; Matthews, Veronica; Anderson, Kate; Lawler, Sheleigh; Garvey, Gail.

    In: Integrative Cancer Therapies, Vol. 17, No. 3, 01.09.2018, p. 568-581.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Traditional and Complementary Medicine Use Among Indigenous Cancer Patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States

    T2 - A Systematic Review

    AU - Gall, Alana

    AU - Leske, Stuart

    AU - Adams, Jon

    AU - Matthews, Veronica

    AU - Anderson, Kate

    AU - Lawler, Sheleigh

    AU - Garvey, Gail

    PY - 2018/9/1

    Y1 - 2018/9/1

    N2 - Background: Cancer ‘patients’ are increasingly using traditional indigenous and complementary medicines (T&CM) alongside conventional medical treatments to both cure and cope with their cancer diagnoses. To date T&CM use among Indigenous cancer patients from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States has not been systematically reviewed. Methods: We systematically searched bibliographic databases to identify original research published between January 2000 and October 2017 regarding T&CM use by Indigenous cancer patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. Data from records meeting eligibility criteria were extracted and appraised for quality by 2 independent reviewers. Results: Twenty-one journal articles from 18 studies across all 4 countries met our inclusion criteria. T&CM use ranged from 19% to 57.7% (differing across countries). T&CM was mostly used concurrently with conventional cancer treatments to meet their spiritual, emotional, social, and cultural needs; however, bush, traditional, and herbal medicines were used in a minority of cases as an alternative. Conclusions: Our findings highlight the importance of T&CM use to Indigenous cancer patients across these 4 countries; we identified multiple perceived spiritual, emotional and cultural benefits to its use. The patient’s perception of their health professional’s attitudes toward T&CM in some cases hindered or encouraged the patient’s disclosure. Additional research is required to further explore the use and disclosure of T&CM among Indigenous cancer patients to help inform and ensure effective, safe, coordinated care for Indigenous cancer patients that relies on shared open decision making and communication across patients, communities, and providers.

    AB - Background: Cancer ‘patients’ are increasingly using traditional indigenous and complementary medicines (T&CM) alongside conventional medical treatments to both cure and cope with their cancer diagnoses. To date T&CM use among Indigenous cancer patients from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States has not been systematically reviewed. Methods: We systematically searched bibliographic databases to identify original research published between January 2000 and October 2017 regarding T&CM use by Indigenous cancer patients in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. Data from records meeting eligibility criteria were extracted and appraised for quality by 2 independent reviewers. Results: Twenty-one journal articles from 18 studies across all 4 countries met our inclusion criteria. T&CM use ranged from 19% to 57.7% (differing across countries). T&CM was mostly used concurrently with conventional cancer treatments to meet their spiritual, emotional, social, and cultural needs; however, bush, traditional, and herbal medicines were used in a minority of cases as an alternative. Conclusions: Our findings highlight the importance of T&CM use to Indigenous cancer patients across these 4 countries; we identified multiple perceived spiritual, emotional and cultural benefits to its use. The patient’s perception of their health professional’s attitudes toward T&CM in some cases hindered or encouraged the patient’s disclosure. Additional research is required to further explore the use and disclosure of T&CM among Indigenous cancer patients to help inform and ensure effective, safe, coordinated care for Indigenous cancer patients that relies on shared open decision making and communication across patients, communities, and providers.

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    KW - cancer

    KW - cancer care facilities

    KW - complementary therapies

    KW - Indigenous population

    KW - neoplasms

    KW - Oceanic Ancestry Group

    KW - traditional medicine

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    U2 - 10.1177/1534735418775821

    DO - 10.1177/1534735418775821

    M3 - Review article

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    JO - Integrative Cancer Therapies

    JF - Integrative Cancer Therapies

    SN - 1534-7354

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