Therapeutic Bodyworkers Bring Relief to Breast Cancer Patients

Toniika Wakefield, a therapist with Therapie Therapeutic Bodywork located at 6819 W. Tropicana gives a patient a unique form of breast massage.

By Guy Dawson

Las Vegas Informer

Photo Courtesy of Sally Spurgeon

Sally Spurgeon, owner of Thérapie, a therapeutic massage, bodywork and spa treatment company located at 6819 W. Tropicana Ave has first-hand experience with the pain that is associated with breast related operations. While recovering from a double mastectomy after being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008, Spurgeon relied on the treatments given by the therapists in her office to help ease her pain and tension. The relief she received from their treatments led her to change the direction of her business.

“When I was recovering from my surgery, different therapists treated me with different massage techniques and it all helped,” Spurgeon said. “I decided to incorporate all of the techniques they used on me to create a unique form of breast massage that would help women who suffer from post- surgical conditions and other breast related ailments. I want other women to receive the same benefits I did.”

Breast massage involves hands-on techniques to enhance circulation and drainage of breast tissue, reduce scar tissue and increase range of motion. Conditions that indicate the need for treatment include pain, congestion and swelling, uneven breasts following augmentation or reduction surgery, discomforts of pregnancy breast feeding or weaning, pre-menstrual and menopausal tenderness, breast pain, tightness and constriction in the chest and back and emotional tension.

According to Spurgeon, Thérapie is the only therapeutic massage office in Las Vegas that offers her technique of breast massage. It is also interesting to note that while seeking approval for her form of treatment, Spurgeon created the form that the Nevada State Board of Massage Therapy adapted for use as their consent to allow breast massage to be legally performed.

In addition to the work she does for her clients, Spurgeon and her staff also give free breast massages to women who can’t afford them through ‘Silent Angels’, a program she created with the G-Alex Foundation, a 501©3 organization. She also volunteers her services at The Caring Place, another 501©3 organization that partners with the Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation to empower individuals and families on their journey with cancer in order to enhance their quality of life.

“I want this treatment to be available to all women who have had breast cancer,” she said.

Spurgeon has been joined at Thérapie in giving breast massages by Jennifer Shulte, a massage instructor and former Director of the Academy of Healing Arts and Toniika Wakefield, a therapist and instructor. She said that both therapists are passionate about their work and are helping her create a class to teach their technique to other therapists and nursing staff.

Dr. Anne O’Neill, a Fellowship trained breast surgeon who recommends Spurgeon’s breast massage treatments to her patients said that she has been very impressed with Thérapie’s work.

“The fact that she is a cancer survivor and has undergone many surgeries to reconstruct her breasts has given her a greater understanding of the patient’s symptoms and how best to treat them,” she said. “Her staff is very motivated and enthusiastic about this branch of massage and this is greatly appreciated by my patients.”

For more information about breast massage or Thérapie Therapeutic Bodywork call 202-1400 or visit

Guy Dawson

Guy Dawson is the Managing Partner of Classy Communications, a Las Vegas-based Public Relations firm. He is also the host of PR Connections, a forum for business owners, leaders and celebrities to showcase what they do. PR Connections airs every Wed at 1:00 pm on KLAV 1230 AM or at For more information about Classy Communications PR and Advertising visit or call (702) 845-6129.


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