Who remembers playing Pac-Man? Come on, ‘fess up. Basically Pac-Man moves through the maze eating the dots.
If you need a refresher, here’s a Tribute to Pac-Man from YouTube.
How does Pac-Man relate to cancer?
It’s all about visualization. Visualizing the very last cancer cell in your body being eaten up and destroyed by white cells, chemotherapy or radiation.
Visualization. The technique of creating images and actions in our mind and stepping into them in our reality. A method of teaching, understanding and coping.
Viktor Frankl, physician, and Logotherapist, who lived through the horrors of German concentration camps shared in this book, Man’s Search for Meaning, “everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms–to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s way.”
How do Pac-Man, visualization and attitude affect the cancer battle?
Unfortunately measuring the mind and the connection to the immune system is not always easy.
Biofeedback. Biofeedback is one measurable tool. Biofeedback is a methodology which utilizes techniques to assist patients to control body function such as blood pressure and heart beat and muscle tension by responding to their own body reactions.
The Continuum Center for Health and Healing describes biofeedback or self-regulation, this way: “…the ability to observe oneself and acquire the skills needed to make changes in one’s physiology, behavior, or even lifestyle in order to promote well-being and health.”
In the early ’90’s oncologist O. Carl Simonton, MD and psychologist Stephanie Simonton, Ph.D pioneered psychosocial cancer therapy. Getting Well Again, applies his self-awareness techniques. Today the Simonton Cancer Center shares the ten tenets which are based on the theory that our beliefs, belief systems and our emotions are central to health and healing.
Alternative Therapies? Is this thinking outside the traditional box of medical care? Yes.
Memorial-Sloan Kettering uses the term “complementary” to describe its Integrated Medicine Service, “…which addresses the emotional, social and spiritual needs of patients and families,” and includes therapies, education, workshops and clinical trials. The services go beyond traditional medical standards and includes access to unproven therapies and modalities of care.
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a division of the National Institute of Health is a U.S. government agency whose mission is to “explore complementary and alternative healing practices in the context of rigorous science, train complementary and alternative medicine researchers and disseminate authoritative information to the public and professionals.”
Today alternative methods of care is standard fare for cancer facilities across the United States.
Nutritional Therapy is the practice of supporting immune function and keeping the body strong during the traditional therapies such as chemo and radiation and helping the body during the recuperation phase. Cancer Treatment Centers of America is one of the pioneers in this therapy, going the extra step to provide in-hospital classes on nutrition and offering their own supplements for outpatients.
MD Anderson offers patient education and resources of complementary/integrative medicine options.
The University of California, San Diego Medical Center, Moores Cancer Center offers an incredible range of therapies from accupressure and Qigong, to guided imagery and music therapy.
And isn’t that what it’s about? Providing the therapies that make the cancer patient well again.
Pac-Man Theory? Why not?
It’s all about options in care.