Oncology Massage Practitioner Diploma

Oncology Massage Practitioner Diploma

Validated by IPTI - (Independent Professional Therapists International)
20 cpd points

If you or a loved one is living with cancer you will know that it can be a powerful life changing experience. The diagnosis of cancer can bring a great deal of anxiety and fear to the cancer patient and their caregivers. Often the cancer patient`s whole world is turned upside down. Adapting to cope with the diagnosis, the treatment plan and any symptoms & side effects can be a huge mountain to climb physically, emotionally & practically.

Skilled touch is beneficial at nearly every stage of the cancer experience, during the diagnosis and prognosis stages, hospitalisation, the pre- or post-operative period, in the out-patient clinic, during chemotherapy and radiation, recovery at home, remission or cure and in the end stages of life.

The use of Complementary Therapies for clients suffering from Cancer is becoming more and more the norm than the exception. With current epidemiology suggesting that 1 in 3 people will experience cancer during their lifetime and the number of newly diagnosed cases in adults over the age of 50 doubling every decade, more and more therapists will work with clients who have, or have recovered from cancer.

To be a truly effective therapist we must have a clear understanding of Cancer, its causes, its effect on the individual and their close relatives and friends, the various treatments and drug therapies in use today, the side effects resulting from these treatments and how we as the therapist need to adapt our treatments for the client, and their nearest and dearest, to gain the greatest benefit from the treatment.

One of the most relaxing and enjoyable experiences for a person with cancer (or for any other human being, for that matter) is to receive gentle, compassionate, accepting touch from another person. Touch is fundamental. The goal of oncology massage is to enhance the patient’s natural healing abilities by providing a gentle, soothing supportive touch. Massage now plays a major role in palliative care (symptom relief) for cancer patients, and is used by many hospitals, hospices and self-help groups. Massage can also be used to help family, friends and carers.

This unique post graduate diploma training course, has been developed for massage therapists who have a special interest in working with people with cancer. It provides the information and experience to prepare you to work safely and confidently with clients who have a history of cancer or are currently in treatment for the disease.

The course is designed to give you a greater understanding of Cancer, its causes and common treatments used today. We then explore the use of Massage to treat the side-effects of the various treatments on offer and to improve the sufferer`s quality of life.

As a Complementary Practitioner, it is vital to be fully educated and trained before working on anyone who has cancer, particularly with the impending changes in standards and regulations within the industry.

Course Details

During the course you will cover the following:

Days One and Two

  • Overview of cancer and the allopathic treatment
  • Main causes of Cancer – Understanding how cancer spreads
  • Cancer prevention – the role of complementary therapist
  • Types of Cancer – Statistics and trends
  • The basic physiology of cancer and metastasis
  • Symptoms that may indicate potential cancer
  • Conventional and alternative cancer tests
  • Exploring the issues of massage and cancer
  • Understanding the psychological aspects of living with a potentially fatal disease
  • Conventional cancer treatments and their side-effects and controversies

Days Three and Four

  • Benefits of massage for cancer and palliative care clients in the home, hospital and hospice
  • Common Side effects of treatment and symptoms of disease and the use of massage:
    • Fatigue
    • Nausea
    • Insomnia
    • Exhaustion
    • Weakness in the limbs
    • Depression
    • Hair Loss
    • Radiation
    • Burns
    • Lymphoedema & Oedema
    • Scars and adhesions
    • GI Tract disorders
    • Constipation
  • Adaptations necessary for people undergoing surgery, radiation
    or chemotherapy or who have a history of cancer
  • How to adapt massage techniques for safe practice
  • Client and practitioner positioning
  • The role of touch and other complementary therapies in cancer care
  • The dos and don’ts for therapists
  • Helping care providers – family and friends
  • What to use in massage – various carrier oils and other products
  • Teaching family members to massage
  • Seated exercise for cancer patients
  • Cautions and contra-indications
  • Guidelines for safe practice
  • Consultation Procedure for people with a history of cancer

On this course you will learn to adapt massage therapy techniques to work safely and effectively with people diagnosed with cancer. This specialised practice requires you to pay close attention to the physical, emotional, and psychological needs of clients in all stages of cancer and cancer treatment, and allows a consistent standard of skill to be applied in whatever environment the person with experience of cancer chooses to receive their therapy.


You will be required to sit a 75 minute exam usually on Day 3 of the course. In addition students will be required to submit a project on a particular aspect of Cancer. The project should be approx. 2000 words (minimum 1000) and be correctly referenced. Evidence of clinical experience is encouraged where possible for all attendees and distinction grades may only be awarded to those who have provided this. The deadline for completing all assessment requirements is 6 months from the completion of the course.


This course is designed as an advanced diploma open to qualified Massage Therapists. A diploma certificate will be issued following completed course work and exams.

Who Can Attend?

This workshop is designed for practitioners, qualified in any form of Body Massage Therapy.

Recognition by Professional Associations

Validated by IPTI – (Independent Professional Therapists International) and widely accepted by most Professional Bodies

More Information

Please note – Therapists who have completed the Oncology Reflexology Practitioner Diploma will be exempt from the first weekend of this course and the course fees will be discounted accordingly ie £147.50 (+VAT) plus exam fee.

The second weekend of the course will be largely practical in content and you will be required to wear appropriate clinic workwear for this. During the practical sessions you will practise on each other under the supervision of the tutor who will offer guidance and feedback.

Duration: 4 days

Course fees include:
~ All class tuition
~ A comprehensive course manual
~ An MSCM Certificate of Attendance for your professional portfolio
~ 20 cpd points

Exam Fees:  – £50.00 (+VAT) – Payable prior to course commencement.

~ Exam registration
~ Practical assessment
~ Marking of theory exam
~ Marking of assignments
~ Marking of case studies
~ Issue of Diploma
~ Postage of diploma by Registered Post

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Course Dates

Please note - all deposits and course fees are non-refundable.

All transfers are at the discretion of the school and would be subject to an administrative charge of £25.00

If the course is full and you would like to join the waiting list please either send us an email at info@mscm.co.uk or book on-line without payment

July 2021 - 2 weekends - 10am - 5pm

Cost: £345.00 (+VAT)

Interest-free Easy Payment Plan available upon request.£50.00 (+VAT) deposit, payable on booking.
Confirmed Dates (fees incl. exam fees)
Class Dates
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