The Beat Goes On...For Good Health

Reporter: Shannon Samson

At St. Mary's Medical Center in Evansville, they're beating on drums to beat cancer, believing that what goes on in the mind clearly affects the body and vice versa.

Cancer survivor Eric Thornton says, "Any problems or anything going on with you kind of disappears and you're totally relaxed and I think it's good for your well being."

Program coordinator Holly Maxey says she has proof. She cites research from Pennsylvania's Mind-Body Wellness Center that shows group drumming boosts immune activity that seeks out and destroys not just cancer cells, but viruses too.

Maxey says, "It reduces stress. We've had patients come in with migraine headaches and you would think that all this noise would just about put them over the edge, but when they leave, they don't have migraines anymore."

Karla Hatfield's Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma has been in remission since April. Her recovery process included several non-traditional therapies like this, programs that raised eyebrows in her family. Hatfield says, "They were kind of skeptical I think. I'm up for trying anything new, so I really wasn't. It's a really good stress reliever and it kind of energizes me too."

And what could be wrong with having a little fun? Thornton says, "It's good not to be so serious all the time."

St. Mary's Hope Cancer Resource Center presents "The Beat Goes On" every Tuesday in March from 5:30pm until 6:30pm. The program is free. Please call 812-485-5725 to register.