Lenny Zakim (left) was known for the passion he brought to his career as a civil rights attorney and activist, and when he was diagnosed with cancer in 1994 the Newton, Mass., resident faced this challenge with similar zeal.
He took an active role in his treatment at Dana-Farber through exercise, nutrition, and other means, and a decade after his death from multiple myeloma, his efforts to give other patients a similar sense of control are embodied in the center here that bears his name.
Since opening at Dana-Farber in the fall of 2000, the Leonard P. Zakim Center for Integrative Therapies has been offering individuals care ranging from acupuncture and massage to nutritional consults and music therapy.
Dana-Farber is an international leader in this emergent field – also known as complementary therapy – which research has proven can help alleviate some symptoms of cancer treatment and its side effects while improving a patient’s quality of life.
And as more caregivers and scientists embrace the approach that Zakim championed, its appeal to patients is increasing accordingly. Patient visits to the Zakim Center have gone from 778 during its first year of operations to more than 4,000 in 2008, and its staff from three practitioners (then all working part-time) to 20.
Services include the aforementioned therapies as well as meditation, mind-body practices like Reiki and Qigong, and more, and in many cases pediatric as well as adult patients can receive them.
Views from the Zakim Center: A Photo Essay
Read more about the Zakim Center's progress
Spring/Summer 2009 Table of Contents
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, 450 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215 | Call us toll-free: