It was with a glimmer of hope that I read the original research CE feature “Using Guided Imagery to Manage Pain in Young Children with Sickle Cell Disease” (April), which discusses the potential for using complementary and alternative medicine.
I'm obtaining my RN license this year from a highly respected institution. Although the concept and benefits of complementary and alternative therapy are acknowledged and even embraced at my school, we haven't been provided with the necessary training to develop the skills we need to successfully implement this type of treatment in our nursing practice.
What if current and future nurse providers, educators, and researchers offered patients complementary and alternative medicine as part of the initial course of treatment—instead of only when drugs fail? The potential exists to effectively treat a variety of conditions, including sickle cell disease, cancer, arthritis, and mood disorders. More research is needed, so that we can offer patients the opportunity to make informed choices about their own care.
Sasha Binford, CNA