BACKGROUND: Following a survey of health professionals' familiarity with 19 non-pharmacologic interventions for cancer pain, evidence-based continuing education sessions were conducted on the five therapies about which the professionals reported being most interested in learning more. METHODS: Three months following the education sessions, the original questionnaire was re-administered. Responses from the original survey were compared with those on the post-education survey. To further analyze the data, the post-education survey responses of the health professionals who had attended the education sessions were compared with those who had not attended. RESULTS: Compared with the original survey, the respondents were more familiar with therapeutic touch and massage therapy and more aware of the research regarding these interventions, and perceptions of effectiveness had significantly increased for all five interventions. For all five interventions, those who had attended the sessions were significantly more aware of research than those who had not attended. CONCLUSIONS: The continuing education sessions improved familiarity and awareness of research but had little influence on the health professionals' perceptions regarding the effectiveness, risk, and planned future use of the interventions. The low response rate and other limitations of this project warrant a cautious interpretation of the findings.