Giving patients stress relief advice and relaxation classes before surgery could speed recovery and boost long-term survival.

A new study of 160 men undergoing surgery for prostate cancer, those given stress- management had more active immune systems 48 hours after the procedure – important for tackling inflammation and infection.

They also had higher levels of compounds that boost wound healing. Furthermore, doctors say this increase in immune system activity could lower the risk of the cancer spreading, and, ultimately, boost changes of full recovery.

They suggest stress – management techniques, such as deep breathing exercises and focusing on relaxing mental images, could help with all types of surgery.

Recent studies have shown that men who receive stress – management before surgery have a better quality of life one year later, but until now no research has investigated the biological changes triggered by this therapy.

Stress is thought to lower the activity of the immune system, though scientists are unclear why.

One theory is that the “fight or flight” response to frightening event triggers the body to divert all resources to the major organs and the muscles. This means less support for non-essential functions.

The new study from the University of Texas, published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, saw men with early-stage cancer who were having their prostates removed divided in three groups.

Results show that two day after surgery, men who had the stress management had significantly higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines. These proteins encourage healing. The patients also had greater activity of natural killer cells, which help protect the body from infection – natural killer cells have a role, too, in detecting and destroying rogue cancer cells.

The men in the other two groups had no change in their immune systems. The doctors also assessed the mood of the patients on the morning of surgery, and found that those in the first group were most positive. (Daly Mail, Good Health, 8th Feb. 2011)

Shiatsu treatments against the natural anxiety and for relaxation and meditation, to change your breathing habit (include exercises), in preparation for your operation in hospital and after for helping you through the healing process.

292011 The Times Online (

Massage Therapy: Which Type is Best For You?

No matter what ails you, massage therapy has been a highly effective and recommended healing treatment for millennia. With its calming oils, calm environment and the near miraculous effects of skillfully applied touch and pressure, massage can work miracles for your body and soul.

There are a large range of massage treatments to make a choice from based on whether you are trying to ease discomfort, ease stress or recover from an illness. Here is a short list of some of the most well-liked massage methodologies to help you pick a style that will be best suited for your condition and desired results.

Shiatsu is best for treating back, neck and shoulder discomfort, anxiety, headaches, and recovery from injuries. The core benefit is discomfort elimination, relaxation and re-energizing. Shiatsu is a form of Japanese bodywork that utilizes finger pressure in a rhythmical sequence on acupuncture meridians. Each pressure point is held for two to eight seconds to improve the flow of energy and help the body regain balance. The therapist typically uses a mat on the floor rather than the normal massage table for this session.

Myofascial Release (MFR) and Deep Tissue Massage. This is best for treating anxiety and stress and/or isolated aches and pains. This relaxing massage approach will ease away all those emotional and physical pressures and restore your energy. A deep tissue treatment is also a superb choice if you are suffering from discomfort in a specific body part. Firmer pressure than a regular massage is applied to focus on particular points and make a release to ease the discomfort.

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Sports Injuries and Maximising Performance

For young adults, injuries during a time of rapid growth coupled with a peak of physical activity can lay up a store of problems later in life; the body compensates automatically to avoid pain and further injury – this can lead to extra strain on other joints.

Conversely, older people have previous injuries, postural and work related compensations, which may adversely affect their performance and lead to a prematurely sedentary lifestyle. E.g. a stiff right hip from years of climbing into the cab of a lorry, may lead to extra strain on the back when twisting and reaching while playing squash.

In the past, sports related injuries have been examined and treated as separate problems – treatment has been only to the injured part. Your Shiatsu Practitioner is considering all the factors which may have led up to and contributed to the problem and which are important as the injury itself. The Shiatsu treatment could start immediately after the injury happened, e.g. your broken limp is corrected and plastered, or your GP has checked your whiplash.

Shiatsu and MFR treatments can help to reduce the healing time and to be at the end quicker back in your sport or work.

Your Shiatsu Practitioner Hans-Joerg Sommer will examine the posture and strength and flexibility of muscles, ligaments and tendons of joints – all the parts which make the human body a dynamic machine. Poor flexibility in the joints will prevent the body performing at its best – whether it be at disco dancing or football – and is often a contributory element to injury.

The whole body treatment you remain fully clothed and usually lay on a futon on the floor.

Missing Power in Sport or Work

Do you feel always tired and powerless in everything that you are doing? That could be your body and mind is carrying a lot of toxins, which your body has collected from your food, drinks (tea, coffee, dairy products and alcohol e.g.) and through the breathing in of the polluted air which surround our living, working and training area (running or cycling along roads with cars emission).

Detox your body with Ampuku Treatments, offered in your Shiatsu Practice Hans-Joerg Sommer MRSS, perhaps last your own detox programme, and could bring back all your power and energy in body, mind and spirit.

The whole body treatment you remain fully clothed and usually lay on a futon on the floor.

Shiatsu Newsletter

Shiatsu Newsletter

Do you stress before a surgery?