Effect of Reiki on Symptom Management in Oncology

  • Demir, Melike (School of Health, Namik Kemal University) ;
  • Can, Gulbeyaz (Nursing Faculty, Istanbul University) ;
  • Celek, Enis (Reiki Gelisim)
  • Published : 2013.08.30


Reiki is a form of energy therapy in which the therapist, with or without light touch, is believed to access universal energy sources that can strengthen the body's ability to heal itself, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain and stress. There is currently no licensing for Reiki nor, given its apparent low risk, is there likely to be. Reiki appears to be generally safe, and serious adverse effects have not been reported. So in this article provides coverage of how to use Reiki in oncology services.


Reiki;oncology services;symptom management


  1. Baldwin A, Vitale A, Brownell E, et al (2010). The touchstone process: an ongoing critical evaluation of Reiki in the scientific literature. Holist Nurs Pract, 24, 260-76.
  2. Birocco N, Guillame C, Storto S, Ritorto G (2012). The effects of reiki therapy on pain and anxiety in patients attending a day oncology and infusion services Unit. Am J Hosp Palliat Care, 29, 290-4.
  3. Bodeker G, Kronenberg F (2002). A public health agenda for traditional, complementary, and alternative medicine. Am J Publ Health, 92, 1582-91.
  4. Bowden D, Goddard L, Gruzelier J (2010). A randomised controlled single-blind trial of the effects of Reiki and positive imagery on well-being and salivary cortisol. Res Bull, 81, 66-72.
  5. Brathovde A (2006). Reiki for self-care of nurses and healthcare providers. Holist Nurs Pract, 20, 95-101.
  6. Burden B, Herron-Marx S, Clifford C (2005). The increasing use of reiki as a complementary therapy in specialist palliative care. Int J Palliative Nursing, 11, 248-53.
  7. Can G, Erol O, Topuz E, Aydiner A (2009). Quality of life and complementary and alternative medicine use among cancer patients in Turkey. Eur J Oncol Nurs, 13, 287-94.
  8. Catlin A, Taylor-Ford RL (2011). Investigation of standard care versus sham Reiki placebo versus actual Reiki therapy to enhance comfort and well-being in a chemotherapy infusion center. Oncol Nurs Forum, 38, 212-20.
  9. Cuneo C, Cooper M, Drew C, et al (2011). The effect of reiki on work-related stress of the registered nurse. J Holist Nurs, 29, 33.
  10. Deng G, Frenkel M, Cohen L, et al (2009). Evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for integrative oncology: complementary therapies and botanicals. J Soc Integrative Oncol, 7, 85-120.
  11. Ernst E, Schmidt K, Baum M (2006). Complementary/alternative therapies for the treatment of breast cancer. A systematic review of randomized clinical trials and a critique of current terminology. The Breast, 12, 526-30.
  12. Gozum S, Tezel A, Koc M (2003). Complementary alternative treatments used by patients with cancer in eastern Turkey. Cancer Nur, 26, 230-6.
  13. Hann D, Baker F, Denniston M, Entrekin N (2005). Long-term breast cancer survivors’ use of complementary therapies: perceived impact on recovery and prevention of recurrence. Integrative Cancer Therapies, 4, 14-20.
  14. Kryak E, Vitale A (2011). Reiki and its journey in to a hospital setting. Holist Nurs Pract, 25, 238-45.
  15. Lee MS, Pittler MH, Ernst E (2008). Effects of reiki in clinical practice: a systematic review of randomised clinical trials. Int J Clin Pract, 62, 947-54.
  16. Miles P, True G (2003). Reiki.a review of biofield therapy history, theory, practice and research. Altern Ther Health Med, 9, 62-71.
  17. Moore A (2005). Reiki energy medicine: enhancing the healing process. Integrative Medicine Quarterly News, 2, 1-5.
  18. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2008). The use of complementary and alternative medicine in the United States.
  19. Olson K, Hanson J, Michaud M (2003). A phase II trial of Reiki for the management of pain in advanced cancer patients. J Pain Symp Manag, 26, 990-7.
  20. Pedersen C, Christensen S, Jensen A, Zachariae R (2009). Prevalence, socio-demographic and clinical predictors of post-diagnostic utilisation of different types of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in a nationwide cohort of Danish women treated for primary breast cancer. Eur J Cancer, 45, 3172-81.
  21. Potter P (2007). Breast biopsy and distress. Feasibility of testing a Reiki intervention. J Holist Nurs, 25, 238-48.
  22. Richeson N, Spross J, Lutz K, Peng C (2010). Effects of Reiki on anxiety, depression, pain, and physiological factors in community-dwelling older adults. Res Gerontological Nur, 3, 187-98.
  23. Ring M (2009). Reiki and changes in pattern manifestations. Nurs Sci Q, 22, 250.
  24. Sikorskii A, Wyatt G, Siddiqi A, Tamkus D (2011). Recruitment and early retention of women with advanced breast cancer in a complementary and alternative medicine trial. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med, [Epub ahead of print].
  25. So PS, Jiang JY, Qin (2012). Touch therapies for pain relief in adults. The Cochrane Library, 8, 1-48.
  26. The Center for Reiki Research. Research conclusions. http:www.// Published 2010.
  27. Toms R (2011). Reiki therapy a nursing intervention for critical care. Crit Care Nurs Q, 34, 213-7.
  28. Tsang KL, Carlson LE, Olson K (2007). Pilot crossover trial of reiki versus rest for treating cancer-related fatigue. Integr Cancer Ther, 6, 25-35.
  29. Ugurluer G, Karahan A, Edirne T, Sahin HA (2007). The prevalence and reasons of CAM use in outpatients receiving chemotherapy. Van Tip Dergisi, 14, 68-73.
  30. Vitale A (2007). An Integrative Review of Reiki Touch Therapy Research. Holist Nurs Pract, 21, 167-79.
  31. Whelan KM, Wishnia GS (2003). Reiki therapy: The benefits to a nurse/ Reiki practitioner. Holistic Nursing Practice, 17, 209-17.

Cited by

  1. Integrative medicine and the oncology patient: options and benefits vol.26, pp.7, 2018,