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Thoughts on why natural health is so vilified

Amyadipose
Amyadipose Member Posts: 13
edited November 2019 in Alternative Medicine

It almost feels as though most doctors are struggling to keep hold of methods they know to be the only way, and are increasingly frustrated with societies push to find answers that don't involve such toxic and deadly treatments. Like people who still think letting a baby cry it out and the methods of dr spock are correct. Or that formula is just as good as breast milk. It just seems like science and research in other countries are evolving quicker than the old school American medical establishment, and we as patients have access to this info but no access to utilize new methods. Thoughts? I imagine in 25 or 50 years from now, people are going to look back and be horrified by how breast cancer was treated . I'm grateful to have this now instead of 30 years ago, my heart goes out to those who had to endure even harsher treatments back then.

Comments

  • juniper
    juniper Member Posts: 12
    edited May 2019

    While I don’t believe that you can compare crying it out and formula feeding with treatment for a deadly disease, I do hope that one day chemo will be no longer be needed. We will have new treatment methods or better yet - a way to prevent breast cancer from occurring at all.

    An ethical doctor can only prescribe treatments that are the standard of care. An ethical oncologist cannot offer alternative treatmentsin lieu of the standard of care. An ethical oncologist should explain the options available to a cancer patient- including no treatment to chemo, rads, and hormonals or herceptin. He or she should be able to explain the benefits and risks of said treatment without emotional/scare tactics such that the patient can are an informed decision.

  • beesie.is.out-of-office
    beesie.is.out-of-office Member Posts: 1,435
    edited May 2019

    I don't think people looking back in 25 or 50 years will be horrified by how breast cancer was treated today. I think they will see step-by-step progressive change that advanced treatments from today's standards to whatever the standards are in 25 and 50 years. I think they will understand that the treatment in 2019 was the best that the medical and scientific communities had available at the time, and was more advanced than what was available 25 and 50 years before, which was the best medical science had to offer at that time. That is simply how human knowledge advances. We live in the times in which we live. The past always looks draconian and primitive, and the future always looking promising and progressive.

    I don't think that doctors are struggling to hold onto old methods of treatment, nor do I think they vilify more natural treatments. I think most doctors would be thrilled if they could offer their patients better treatments that are more natural and have fewer harmful side effects. But a doctor's job is to offer up the best treatments available, based evidence of efficacy. At this point, the only treatments that have the supporting evidence are conventional treatments such as surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and endocrine therapy. Most doctors would probably consider it inappropriate to lament the lack of natural treatments and bemoan the current range of treatment options when talking to patients to whom they are recommending rads or chemo or endocrine therapy. However in private conversation I'd bet that many would express their frustration. We only get to see the doctor's "game face" and I don't think it's fair to draw from that the conclusion that most doctors wouldn't be pleased to see more natural treatments - if those treatments had evidence (statistically significant research studies) supporting their efficacy.

  • ShetlandPony
    ShetlandPony Member Posts: 3,063
    edited May 2019

    I remember my surgeon telling me about the bad old days when a radical mastectomy was the standard (more extensive than current type or lumpectomy), and how glad he was that he could now do more modern surgeries, and how women can now know before “going under” what is to be done. Similarly, he was all over the sentinel node biopsy safely taking the place in many cases of what would have been removal of all the axillary nodes for everyone. I went to a conference at my cancer center where alongside physicians and researchers reporting on mainstream developments and research projects, there were presentations on acupuncture to help with pain and side effects, a presentation by a physician who is a full-time Chinese medicine practitioner, and other topics that probably would not have been discussed at a medical center in the past. And I read current research in scientific journals about the importance of gut health and circadian rhythms in fighting cancer. So I hope we are moving toward integrating all we can learn. Somehow we need to deal with the trust issues so patients will not feel they have to choose a side. In general I feel that traditional folks should try to be open-minded and holistic, and alternative folks should be willing to acknowledge the need for evidence-based treatment.

  • gb2115
    gb2115 Member Posts: 551
    edited May 2019

    Is there research from other countries that shows alternatives to chemo, radiation, or hormone therapy? I would certainly love something other than tamoxifen, but only if it's proven to work at least as well!!


  • santabarbarian
    santabarbarian Member Posts: 2,310
    edited May 2019

    A double blind clinical trial costs $50M. There is no way anyone will spend $50M to prove the utility of something like high dose C or mebendazole (an old repurposed drug) has value against cancer... they can't make the $50M back.

    This is where anecdotal evidence can be important. The Intgrative cancer MD I consulted has been practicing for 30 + years, and has lots of experience and evidence from his practice, but no double blind clinical trial. I decided to listen to him. He still gives chemo, rads, etc, but offers a ton of nutritional support, IVs and he administers the chemo in unique ways (slow drip over 24 hours, or pulsed according to circadian rhythms when cancer is bioactive). He gives High dose C and Curcumin IVs.

  • Amyadipose
    Amyadipose Member Posts: 13
    edited May 2019

    thanks all, I'm frustrated because I'm in a small not very progressive town, we're 20 years behind everything.

  • sbelizabeth
    sbelizabeth Member Posts: 955
    edited May 2019

    When I was a kid, my grandma came a couple of times to stay with us when my mom went to the hospital for a "biopsy." We all held our breath until we knew Mom had emerged from the operating room with her breast still attached to her chest. Even back then, I knew it was a horrible practice to subject someone to anesthesia not knowing if they would awaken with just a small biopsy incision or missing their breast, lymph nodes, and muscles of the chest.

    I've taken letrozole for 7 years now, and yeah, I'm not a fan of the muscle aches, sore hands, stiffness, and cramps. But with my Stage III cancer, I'm grateful to have a weapon to keep the beast chained up and asleep. This specific drug wasn't even available until 2004.

    Remember the Star Trek movie when Bones was racing around a 20th century hospital and was appalled at the barbaric treatments he encountered? In 2099 people will be astonished that "back then, they cut off breasts to treat this disease..."

    Amyadipose, I understand your frustration though. Maybe you could arrange a consultation at an NCI-designated cancer center and bring their recommendations to your local doctor.

  • beesie.is.out-of-office
    beesie.is.out-of-office Member Posts: 1,435
    edited May 2019

    santabarbarian, while no drug company would sponsor research on high dose vitamin C (as an example), this is where universities/hospitals come in, along with funding from government bodies (NIH in the U.S., for example) and charitable organizations. As an example, University Health Network in Toronto, which is where I was treated and which includes Princess Margaret Hospital (one of the top cancer-only hospitals in the world), is one of the top 5 cancer research facilities in the world.

    On the Clinical Trial database, when I input "Breast Cancer" and "Vitamin", I come up with 121 studies, almost all of which are/were being done at universities (I did see Novartis pop up on one study).

    https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/results?cond=Breast...


  • salamandra
    salamandra Member Posts: 727
    edited May 2019

    The studies continue to show that in most cases (where water quality is not an issue) formula feeding *is* just as good as breast-feeding...

  • summerangel
    summerangel Member Posts: 182
    edited May 2019

    To echo Bessie's point, studies are done on natural compounds in some settings. I was involved in a study for Essential Tremor using a widely available supplement called caprylic acid (i.e. octanoic acid), conducted at the NIH in Maryland. Here is the published study, which led to further studies using higher dosages: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3653213/

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,650
    edited May 2019

    For those of you not familiar with radical mastectomies, read up on it. They cut and scraped off as much tissue and muscle as they could . Dr. Halsted was quite proud of scraping down to the bone! So relative to those days, we have made great improvements. My grandmother had a radical mastectomy and it was a hideous, deforming and crippling surgery. As was common, all the muscle was taken.

    My treatment center, though conventional, offers many complimentary supports such as nutrition classes, organic farmer’s market, acupuncture, yoga etc. These support the standard care practices. I have used many of these services but do not consider them to be the main reason I’m doing well after 7+ years at stage IV.

  • Amyadipose
    Amyadipose Member Posts: 13
    edited May 2019

    sbelizabeth I quote bones all the time! "What is this, the Spanish inquisition??" Lol

  • LoriCA
    LoriCA Member Posts: 671
    edited May 2019

    exbrnxgrl I wonder if it's a California thing - all of the hospitals here in south OC have Wellness Centers that offer a full range of integrative and complementary holistic therapies, my hospital even has a naturopathic center and Chinese herbal medicines which really surprised me. Like you said most of it is supposed to be used in addition to traditional treatment, not instead of, but it's so nice to have all of it available. Many of the classes are free (Qigong, tai chi, yoga, pilates, guided meditation, nutrition, art therapy), but the other services are usually priced well below the going local rate.

  • Yndorian
    Yndorian Member Posts: 236
    edited May 2019

    The israelis said than in a year they will released a more cheap, effective and harmful cancer cure. I hope it will true

  • Yndorian
    Yndorian Member Posts: 236
    edited May 2019

    The israelis said than in a year they will release a cheaper, effective and less harmfull cancer cure. I hope it will true

  • Yndorian
    Yndorian Member Posts: 236
    edited May 2019

    Cancer treatments are very expensive. The big pharma won't accept to investigate nothing wich they will can't patenting, like euphoria turicalli latex, which investigation was prohibed because of his good result. There are many studies published about her eficacy. I won't to leave traditional treatments but y trate to complementary with natural medicine

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,650
    edited May 2019

    LoriCA,

    Yes, however some might roll their eyes and say it's another weird CA thing. I'm a Kaiser member (Santa Clara) and I have always liked their focus on wellness. As a 7+ year stage IV patient who leads a relatively normal life, I will proudly be CA weird 😉.

  • ShetlandPony
    ShetlandPony Member Posts: 3,063
    edited May 2019

    Amy, it seems so unfair that some places are behind other places In their approach and offer less to patients. If you are interested in a DIY complementary therapy program, I can recommend some good books and ideas. Though Iknow that doesn't solve the problem of unenlightened or uncaring medical providers.