Groups by Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM)
Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) is defined as a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not presently considered to be part of conventional medicine. While some scientific evidence exists to support the use of CAM, most still lack evidence based studies about whether they are safe or work against the specific cancer.
Patients who used some form of Alternative/Complementary or Integrative medicine:
Carfi , Christopher
Gibson , Sara Taylor
Hahn , Tim
Liles , Nikole
Scranton , Patrick
Smith , Pamela
Botanicals and Herbs
1. Maitake Mushroom D-Fraction Extract - Scientific name: Grifola frondosa " Maitake D-fraction® is an extract of a large mushroom native to the mountains of northeastern Japan. The mushroom is eaten as a food, and the extract is marketed as a food supplement in the United States and Japan. The substance from the maitake mushroom that is thought to be active in humans is a particular type of beta-glucan, a long chain sugar.
- Research has shown that a maitake extract (maitake D-fraction) has immune system effects in animal and laboratory studies. There is no scientific evidence to date that the maitake mushroom is effective in treating or preventing cancer in humans, although some human research is now underway."
- Adomanis, Jeff - drank this extract and said that it made him feel better
2. Essiac Tea - "Essiac was developed in the 1920s by Rene Caisse, a Canadian nurse. It is a formulation of four botanicals: burdock root, sheep sorrel root, slippery elm bark, and rhubarb root. Despite insufficient clinical evidence, many cancer patients use Essiac tea as an alternative treatment based on anecdotal evidence.
Essiac demonstrated antioxidant and cytotoxic properties in vitro, but stimulated growth of human breast cancer cells both via estrogen receptor (ER) dependent and ER independent pathways (3). Data is conflicting on Essiac's antiproliferative effects on prostate cancer cells. A retrospective study of breast cancer patients found that Essiac did not improve quality of life or mood. Well designed clinical trials are needed to evaluate Essiac.
Because Essiac inhibits cytochrome P450 (CYP450) enzymes, it can interfere with some chemotherapy drugs (4). Cancer patients should use caution."
- Bodjanac, Nicole
1. Unda Herbal liquid drops
Alternative Cancer Clinics
Cell Specific Cancer Therapy (CSCT, Inc) - Tijuana, Mexico Through international effort the clinic was closed down in 2003. Offered Zoetron Therapy for $20,000. Patient would lie in a ring while therapist listened to see if the device could detect cancer cells. It was thought that the 'device detected vibrational differences between cancer cells and normal cells and killed cancer cells by sending back their frequency, which would cause them to rupture and die'.
1. Decatur Medical Center, Indianapolis, Indiana - Offers cocktail of vitamins, minerals, and herbs through IV therapy.
2. Penny Brohn Cancer Care formerly Bristol Cancer Help Centre - Chapel Pill Lane, Pill, Bristol, BS20 0HH - Combines complementary therapies and self-help techniques. It is designed to work alongside medical treatment.
- Art Therapy - for relaxation
- Aromatherapy Massage - for relaxation
- Reiki - relaxation
- Reflexology - immune booster & relaxing
- Shiatsu - relaxing
- Inspirational Support Groups
Taking vitamins does not replace the need to maintain a healthy, well balanced diet. There is no documented evidence that taking vitamins will harm a cancer patient, except if you are planning on taking a large dose. Always check with your oncologist before taking any supplement as it could interfere with chemotherapy.
The American Cancer Society posts the following information about vitamins. Task Force
Vitamin A -"No large, well-conducted studies have looked at the effect of vitamin A supplements on cancer risk. Smaller studies have noted a link between their use and lower risks of colon and breast cancer in women, but these studies were not conclusive"
Vitamin C: No large, well-conducted studies have looked at the effect of vitamin C supplements on cancer risk. Smaller studies have generally not found a link between their use and most major types of cancer (lung, colon, breast, and prostate).
Vitamin E: One large study found that vitamin E did not protect against lung cancer but may help prevent prostate cancer. (A large study, known as the SELECT trial, is now attempting to confirm this.) Other studies have yielded mixed results.
Beta Carotene: Several large studies have failed to find any benefit from beta carotene supplements in reducing cancer risk. Two studies found an increased risk of lung cancer among heavy smokers who took the supplements.
Antioxidant Combinations: A large study looking at the combination of vitamins C and E, along with beta carotene, found no significant effect on cancer risk. Other studies have had mixed results.
Multivitamins: Some smaller studies have reported that multivitamins containing folic acid may reduce the risk of colon cancer, but more studies are needed to confirm this link.
Carfi , Christopher
Traditional Chinese Medicine
- Accupuncture - long needles of varying lengths are inserted into the skin to treat disease. No scientific evidence exists that accupuncture is effective against cancer. However, there does seem to be merit in using accupuncture to relieve nausea associated with chemotherapy and relieve pain from surgery.
Hahn , Tim
- Use magnets of varying sizes and strengths placed on the body in order to relieve pain and treat disease. Indivdual claims that it works, but no scientific evidence yet exists to support this claim. Magnetic Therapy
Theramag pad - delivers magnetic therapy to relieve pain and treat the disease.