When you have a doctor's appointment or a medical test, you might feel stressed about the visit to the doctor's office. But a growing idea among breast care centers aims to calm patients and ease their stress.
Calming music and a massage are just what 48-year-old Laura Kagey says she needed before a mammogram to check a suspicious spot.
"I was a little bit anxious because my mom had had cancer just 30 years prior, so we were the same age," Kagey said.
Avera's Breast Center hopes to comfort patients like Kagey through a spa-like atmosphere. The center offers free massages to patients and their loved ones Monday through Thursday mornings. They've even hired a licensed massage therapist who is certified in cancer and mastectomy massage.
"I'm trained to know what medications you are taking and what side effects they can have," Licensed Massage Therapist Sara Shald said.
Along with free massages, patients also have access to complementary aromatherapy bottles.
"Aromatherapy is such a wonderful, easy, non-invasive way to also reduce overall stress and anxiety of the patient," Avera Breast Health Manager Tanya Dietrich said.
Along with several services, officials also aimed for a spa-like atmosphere at the Prairie Center.
"Everything from the color of the paint on the walls to the artwork to the nice, soft lighting and the relaxing music will hopefully convey and influence the patient and their feelings," Dietrich said.
"It's something that just takes the edge off when you are coming in and you are not sure what the test is going to come out like," Kagey said.
Thankfully, Kagey's test results show she's cancer-free. Plus, she's leaving less tense thanks to this massage.
Dietrich says when designing the Avera Breast Center, officials looked at other centers across the nation that had a spa-like atmosphere.