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The news about how doctors want to handle a cancer diagnosis just isn’t getting any better. Yet, there is no shortage of those who come to the forefront to slander any alternative cancer treatments that show promise. Not only is this frustrating, it’s ironic.
How? Well, take their cut and burn philosophy. A recent study out of the esteemed Brigham and Women’s Hospital is helping to prove that it just doesn’t work in many cases.
Take breast cancer…
The use of contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM) — the surgical removal of a breast unaffected by cancer as part of the course of treatment for breast cancer — does not increase survival. This is the practice where a woman may opt to have a healthy breast removed when cancer has been detected in the other.
The procedure more than tripled during 2002 thru 2012. And the evidence is that it just doesn’t help — at least not in the majority of women who are not at high risk due to gene mutation.
In fact the data showed that women who are diagnosed with cancer in one breast are increasingly unlikely to be diagnosed with it in the other breast.
“Our analysis highlights the sustained, sharp rise in popularity of CPM while contributing to the mounting evidence that this more extensive surgery offers no significant survival benefit to women with a first diagnosis of breast cancer,” said senior author Mehra Golshan, MD, Distinguished Chair in Surgical Oncology at BWH. “Patients and caregivers should weigh the expected benefits with the potential risks of CPM including prolonged recovery time, increased risk of operative complications, cost, the possible need for repeat surgery, and effects on self-image.”
I’m glad they’ve cleared that up for us. But what about all those thousands of women who had to undergo the trauma of not only the disease, but the loss of both breasts? Perhaps if the medical experts were not so opposed to just considering something besides cut and burn treatments, we could really make strides in finding better treatments, like the ones Dr. Michael Cutler suggests in his book, Surviving Cancer: A Comprehensive Guide to Understanding the Causes, Treatments and Big Business Behind Medicine’s Most Frightening Diagnosis.
Even though thousands of people seek alternative cancer treatments every year, you won’t hear about them from your doctor. If their track record for saving lives from this dreadful disease is nothing to brag about, what skin is it off their backs to allow cancer patients to try anything else?
For example, in a paper published in Carcinogenesis in 2001, researchers found that animals exposed to cancer-causing chemicals that were fed fermented wheat germ extract, had substantially fewer tumors than a placebo-fed group.
In another laboratory study published in Anticancer Research in 1998, this same concoction slowed the growth and spread of several types of preexisting cancers (including lung cancer) in laboratory animals. The Hungarian government has approved this natural treatment for use as an alternative and complementary therapy. But Americans have to seek information about it overseas.
It reminds me of the problems we have in this country with political correctness. You can’t say anything without someone jumping on a soapbox. You can’t talk about cancer cures outside of your doctor’s office without being considered a quack. Shouldn’t freedom to access a medical treatment be as important as freedom of speech? Dr. Cutler believes so. Click here for more information on alternative cancer treatments detailed in his book.