• Alternative treatments vs. Chemo

    Asked by jlacquement on Thursday, December 20, 2012

    Alternative treatments vs. Chemo

    Does anyone have personal experience with the alternative treatments vs. conventional chemo? It seems like they are a farce, but I would definitely invest in them if I could trust them.

    14 Answers from the Community

    14 answers
    • nancyjac's Avatar
      nancyjac

      You can't trust them so don't invest in them. Not everyone with cancer needs chemotherapy, but for those that do, there is not alternative. If there were, oncologists would be using them. There are many complementary therapies that can help with the side effects of treatments or even enhance the efficacy of chemotherapy, but they are used in combination with, not in place of, chemotherapy.

      about 4 years ago
    • Harry's Avatar
      Harry

      Nancyjac is right. If the alternative treatments were any good they would be the standard treatments. The one thing the alternatives have in common is a total lack of supporting clinical trial evidence. It is quack medicine.

      Which doesn't mean that some wierd complementary therapies don't have a place in your treatment program. And it doesn't mean that new treatments can't come out of unexpected places. One of my "miracle" drugs was developed by the East Germans back during the Cold War. It has become an accepted drug in Western Europe and now the US.

      If you have a particular "Alternative" treatment in mind, perhaps we can find out something about it. I haven't found one yet that I'd want.

      about 4 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar
      SueRae1

      I agree with nancyac and Harry, with one but. I get massage, energy work, and will be trying acupuncture next week, this is in addition to my regular infusion treatments. I find that massage and energy help me recuperate from each infusion, and I've read studies about how acupuncture can help with some of the side effects. My oncologist knows about my alternative treatments, and is totally on board.

      about 4 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar
      GregP_WN

      It is a fairly common thing to look for other "easier" alternatives, but like Nancy says if they were available and worked we would all be using them. I am always being told by somebody to go to some website and buy the powder or pill being sold and I will never have cancer again, I am usually nice about it and just smile and say, yes I will check it out. But I am a common sense kind of guy, and I don't buy into all this stuff about how it's all a big conspiracy, the govt. won't let these companies sell these special pills because there's too much money in "cancer". As a matter of fact, when I start hearing that kind of XXX I usually start not being so nice.

      If there was a better easier way, I would be using it, so whatever your Doctor is suggesting is probably the best bet.

      We wish you easy and smooth treatments and swift recovery.

      about 4 years ago
    • Harry's Avatar
      Harry

      Perhaps it would be a good idea to make an explicit distinction between alternative and complementary therapies. The wording of the original question seems to point to alternative therapies, that is, therapies outside of, and instead of, traditional medicine. This is snake oil. It is dangerous to the patient. If it isn't actively harmful, then its use prevents effective treatment.

      Complementary therapy works with traditional medicine. This is what SueRae is describing. The docs themselves have come to understand that some therapies, sometimes very odd therapies, can help patients deal with the effects of cancer and the treatments prescribed. Complementary therapy is never given instead of traditional medicine. A patient getting complementary therapy gets effective medical treatment.

      Hope. We all want it. We want that miracle drug--a pill that will cure all our ills. And modern medicine is making great strides. But, there are still those who prey along the edges.

      about 4 years ago
    • carm's Avatar
      carm

      I don't know to what type of therapy you are referring but alternative meds can enhance traditional therapies and so they complement them. Therapies like Laetrile, mistletoe, and ukrain are commonly used in Europe to complement traditional therapies. They are not meant to be a monotherapy. Good luck, Carm.

      about 4 years ago
    • catherinemarr's Avatar
      catherinemarr

      Hi,this is Catherine from Cleburne,,just down the road from you,,,,I think it is critical to get the best available traditional medical advice and research alternative,natural supplementation..I used to be terrified of chemo also.....but it really has advanced ...I would be very weary of any alternative products that are terribly expensive,,they are usually unproven.e-mail me if you like ..about treatment in our area....

      about 4 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar
      Carol-Charlie

      I grew up with one brother - wanting with all my heart to have a large family and a sisters and lots of them. I married my Tom (The oldest of 13 chilodren)... Talk about a new meaning for "large" in large family. I had a new sister 1 year older and 1 who was 1 year younger. Two years ago the younger one was diagnosed with cancer on her tongue... She had surgery but opted out of chemo (against my best attempts to get her to take it.) She said she was 'afraid of chemo' - she didn't like to be sick... etc... She talked about this treatment in Mexico that guaranteed a cure... (Red lights flashing here) Anyway... the cancer came back in lymph nodes... oncologist said chemo.... She wouldn't listen to any of us... We have to respect her choices she was 67. When she went they checked her out and changed her diet and told her to come back in three months.... When she went back... they said... oh my this is a very deadly cancer and it's everywhere... We can keep you comfortable... She ran to an oncologist who told her it was too late for chemo, but they would keep her comfortable. She died a few weeks later. I'm so angry at these liars that stone her from us. I'm angry at her for chosing them, They told her that doctors in the USA had refused to use their treatments knowing they worke4d... They lied and lied... Sorry... I get carried away here.

      about 4 years ago
    • jlacquement's Avatar
      jlacquement

      Thank you for your responses. I was told by a chiropractor who's father is an encologist that uses mostly "holistic" treatments, that the protocol "TumorX" should be used by me.

      about 4 years ago
    • Harry's Avatar
      Harry

      TumorX has all the signs of a scam--no clinical research support and lots of testimonials. They have received warning letters from the FDA for false advertising. Anything that relies on testimonials and not on clinical research screams "Scam!" At best, it won't actively hurt you, except in the wallet, and if it delays your effective treatment--well, read Carol-Charlie's response.

      Fighting colorectal cancer isn't going to be easy, but there are several WhatNexters who have been doing just that for years. You need medical treatment, not salves and pastes. By all means, get a second opinion. MD Anderson in Houston is the highest rated cancer hospital in the country.

      I wish fighting cancer were that easy.

      about 4 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar
      gwendolyn

      As critical as I am of current mainstream cancer treatment, I would never consider something like TumorX. Looks like modern day snake oil to me. Do you really want to put your life in the hands of these people? http://www.cancerx.org/f_A_Q.html

      about 4 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      When I was diagnosed (a decade or so ago) I decided to seek alternative therapy rather than the supposed standard of care which was not all that hopeful for a squamous cell carcinoma behind the anus, stage two. I looked into RIFE equipment and was already deeply into nutritional changes and colloidal silver and more. Then I read of a new combo of chemotherapy drugs which were said to be 95% curative. That seemed to be enough for me so I went for the new drugs, two rounds of 3 or 4 days each at the beginning and end of and along with 16 weeks of radiation.

      I was carefully misled by my radiologist. Mid treatment I was quite crispy and somewhat ruined in my private areas. I knew there was no turning back but I switched radiologists, asked for a medical device to keep my vaginal canal open and took a break for a week. During that time, as I came out of sharp focus and shock, the pain became too much to handle. I demanded pain killing drugs which the doctors were now reluctant to give me. They did not want to give me the medical XXX (I forget what lovely name they have for it) either. I asked to actually speak to patients who had survived what they were putting my through and come out the other side. The doctors assured me there were lots like me and plenty of women but they lied. They managed to come up with 2 men who were less than 6 months out of treatments. The only who was furthest along told me he was pretty sure his groin area equipment would eventually work again but he was still tender and healing.

      They don't do such extreme (radiation) and lengthy treatment to people with anal cancer any more. I would hope they are better at diagnosing the problem (I showed the tumor to various and sundry doctors for 13 long years before getting a correct diagnosis). Were I to be so unfortunate as to have the problem return, I would not go through what I did again.

      I have, however, continued with my dietary changes. I eat food prepared without heat any higher than 108 degrees and mix in (what you would find) an amazing variety of fresh vegetables, fruit, seeds, nuts, and herbs as part of my daily regimen. I only eat things with one leg. :-D

      There are MANY foods and herbs which are cancer fighters. Like when you go to hear an orchestra play and one instrument simply will not do the trick and stand in for all others, food must be combined and enough of it eaten regularly too. You want to hear all the instruments required for the musical piece and you want to combine all the food necessary for a healthy life.

      Turmeric is anti cancer, ginger is anti cancer, some cumin is anti cancer, watercress, kiwi, cherries, chaga mushroom and yadda yadda yadda are all anti cancer but you need to eat them and in great quantities with proper proportioning. A type of black cumin (studied and peer reviewed) is so good at shrinking tumors and strengthening the immune system that Sloan Kettering has come out against it fearing that it will make patients too strong for chemotherapy to be effective. The type of cumin is called "nigella sativa" and, even more specific, is must be wild crafted and a certain genus of the plant.

      I do not expect to ever be bothered by cancer again. I got sick because my immune system was compromised by toxic mold in my home. You can read up about how mold can cause skin cancers but all my oncologist ever said (I did not yet know about the mold behind the walls of our home) was "Well, you did not get that from sunlight or smoking."

      I wrote a book (available as a CD) about how to eat food to give yourself a stronger immune system and more vitality:

      http://www.etsy.com/shop/rawmaven

      Just in case you have interest.

      There are also institutes and therapy centers which offer alternative methodology ... I think there is one in Austin called "Optimum Wellness". There is one here, in So Fla, called "Hippocrates Health Institute". They aren't cheap and they don't take insurance. They do have physicians on staff. It isn't about taking a pill. You need to be willing to take a plunge and change your whole life around. In our society, that is not easy.

      Please also investigate meditation, yoga, pilates, acupuncture, massage, infrared saunas and so forth in order to destress your body so that however you decide to fight back will work against the cancer.

      Healthy best wishes and amazing good luck to you
      .

      about 4 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      When I was diagnosed (a decade or so ago) I decided to seek alternative therapy rather than the supposed standard of care which was not all that hopeful for a squamous cell carcinoma behind the anus, stage two. I looked into RIFE equipment and was already deeply into nutritional changes and colloidal silver and more. Then I read of a new combo of chemotherapy drugs which were said to be 95% curative. That seemed to be enough for me so I went for the new drugs, two rounds of 3 or 4 days each at the beginning and end of and along with 16 weeks of radiation.

      I was carefully misled by my radiologist. Mid treatment I was quite crispy and somewhat ruined in my private areas. I knew there was no turning back but I switched radiologists, asked for a medical device to keep my vaginal canal open and took a break for a week. During that time, as I came out of sharp focus and shock, the pain became too much to handle. I demanded pain killing drugs which the doctors were now reluctant to give me. They did not want to give me the medical XXX (I forget what lovely name they have for it) either. I asked to actually speak to patients who had survived what they were putting my through and come out the other side. The doctors assured me there were lots like me and plenty of women but they lied. They managed to come up with 2 men who were less than 6 months out of treatments. The only who was furthest along told me he was pretty sure his groin area equipment would eventually work again but he was still tender and healing.

      They don't do such extreme (radiation) and lengthy treatment to people with anal cancer any more. I would hope they are better at diagnosing the problem (I showed the tumor to various and sundry doctors for 13 long years before getting a correct diagnosis). Were I to be so unfortunate as to have the problem return, I would not go through what I did again.

      I have, however, continued with my dietary changes. I eat food prepared without heat any higher than 108 degrees and mix in (what you would find) an amazing variety of fresh vegetables, fruit, seeds, nuts, and herbs as part of my daily regimen. I only eat things with one leg. :-D

      There are MANY foods and herbs which are cancer fighters. Like when you go to hear an orchestra play and one instrument simply will not do the trick and stand in for all others, food must be combined and enough of it eaten regularly too. You want to hear all the instruments required for the musical piece and you want to combine all the food necessary for a healthy life.

      Turmeric is anti cancer, ginger is anti cancer, some cumin is anti cancer, watercress, kiwi, cherries, chaga mushroom and yadda yadda yadda are all anti cancer but you need to eat them and in great quantities with proper proportioning. A type of black cumin (studied and peer reviewed) is so good at shrinking tumors and strengthening the immune system that Sloan Kettering has come out against it fearing that it will make patients too strong for chemotherapy to be effective. The type of cumin is called "nigella sativa" and, even more specific, is must be wild crafted and a certain genus of the plant.

      I do not expect to ever be bothered by cancer again. I got sick because my immune system was compromised by toxic mold in my home. You can read up about how mold can cause skin cancers but all my oncologist ever said (I did not yet know about the mold behind the walls of our home) was "Well, you did not get that from sunlight or smoking."

      I wrote a book (available as a CD) about how to eat food to give yourself a stronger immune system and more vitality:

      http://www.etsy.com/shop/rawmaven

      Just in case you have interest.

      There are also institutes and therapy centers which offer alternative methodology ... I think there is one in Austin called "Optimum Wellness". There is one here, in So Fla, called "Hippocrates Health Institute". They aren't cheap and they don't take insurance. They do have physicians on staff. It isn't about taking a pill. You need to be willing to take a plunge and change your whole life around. In our society, that is not easy.

      Please also investigate meditation, yoga, pilates, acupuncture, massage, infrared saunas and so forth in order to destress your body so that however you decide to fight back will work against the cancer.

      Healthy best wishes and amazing good luck to you
      .

      about 4 years ago
    • ibcarolek's Avatar
      ibcarolek

      We looked up what was available in part because of 'chemo for life' and 'no cure' prognoses. The only thing that seemed to have some (read: very little) truth to it was having a more alkaline diet. Wikipedia says it's not so true - it's the cancer that causes more acid - but then the company I work for started selling Icelandic water, with a higher ph level and proclaimed heath benefits from that. Ehow had a more flattering description of a higher alkaline diet, and someone (I forgot who) has an internet site that says they went full alkaline and got cured .

      So we now add lemon juice to our water (it's acid but somehow becomes alkaline....) and per 60 Minutes TV show, you shouldn't have any sugar. But the sugar has come back into the diet (hey, it's holiday time!!) but the attention to alkaline friendly food stays...along with steak - definitely unfriendly - but hopefully ok when served with akaline friendly potatoes. I think it comes back to eating balanced and paying attention to what you eat.

      In the end, we decided not to second guess the doc and take the plunge. It's been all right.

      about 4 years ago

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