Published Papers - Abstract 166

Sibbritt D, Adams J, Easthope G & Young A. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) use among elderly Australian women who have cancer. Supportive Care in Cancer, 2003; 11: 548-550

The use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in the general population has grown considerably in recent years. However, little is known about the prevalence of CAM use amongst women with cancer. Our research provides the first step in addressing this gap in knowledge by reporting on a survey of 9,375 Australian women aged 73-78. We found that, for all cancers combined, 14.5% of women with cancer consulted an alternative practitioner. This percentage varied depending on the type of cancer: skin (15.0%), breast (11.5), bowel (8.8%), and other (16.5%). Our findings suggest that CAM is now a significant practice issue for those delivering cancer-patient care and management.