HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Paris, France or Virtually from your home or work.

8th Edition of International Conference on

Traditional Medicine, Ethnomedicine and Natural Therapies

June 05-07, 2025 | Rome, Italy

Traditional Medicine 2024

Therapeutic touch™ in a geriatric palliative care unit a retrospective review

Speaker at Traditional Medicine, Ethnomedicine and Natural Therapies 2024 - Helen Senderovich
Baycrest, Canada
Title : Therapeutic touch™ in a geriatric palliative care unit a retrospective review


Complementary therapies are increasingly used in palliative care (PC) as an adjunct to the standard management of symptoms to achieve an overall well-being for patients with malignant and non-malignant terminal illnesses. A Therapeutic Touch (TT™) Program was introduced to a geriatric Palliative Care Unit (PCU) in October 2010 with two volunteer TT™ Practitioners providing treatment.
To conduct a retrospective review of TT™ services provided to patients in an in-patient geriatric PCU in order to understand their responses to TT™.
A retrospective medical chart review was conducted on both patients who received TT™ as well as a random selection of patients who did not receive TT™ from October 2010–June 2013. Client characteristics and the TT™ Practitioners' observations of the patients' response to treatment were collected and analyzed.
Patients who did not receive TT™ tended to have lower admitting Palliative Performance Scale scores, shorter length of stay and were older. Based on a sample of responses provided by patients and observed by the TT™ practitioner, the majority of patients receiving treatment achieved a state of relaxation or sleep.
This retrospective chart review suggests that implementation of a TT™ program for an inpatient geriatric PCU is feasible, and appears to be safe, and well-tolerated. Moreover, patient responses, as recorded in the TT™ practitioners' session notes, suggest beneficial effects of TT™ for a significant number of participants with no evidence of negative sequelae. Therefore, the use of TT in this difficult setting appears to have potential value as an adjunct or complementary therapy to help patients relax.


Dr. Senderovich is a physician at Baycrest with practice focused on Palliative Care, Pain Medicine and Geriatrics. She is an  Assistant professor at the Department of Family and Community Medicine, and Division of Palliative Care at the University of Toronto who actively involved teaching medical students and residents. She has a broad international experience and a solid research background. Her research was accepted nationally and internationally. She is an author of multiple manuscripts focused on geriatrics, patient’s centered care, ethical and legal aspect of doctor patient relationship, palliative and end-of-life care.