After a diagnosis of cancer there are generally two paths open to people. They can undergo an orthodox medical treatment program for the cancer or they can look at alternative treatments for cancer. A third option involves doing nothing and hoping things sort themselves out. So which is best?
Unfortunately it is practically impossible to say because there is no absolute research into this. The reason that there is no research is because medical professionals are not allowed to prescribe alternative treatments. The result is that in almost all cases a patient who is diagnosed with cancer undergoes an orthodox treatment program including chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. Very few choose to either do nothing or to pursue alternative treatment options.
The reasons that people tend to go the orthodox medical route are varied and complex, but if we want to simplify things as much as possible they boil down to this: Chemotherapy and Orthodox medication are the treatment of choice of those seen as 'experts' on cancer, the doctors, and it is doctors who will usually diagnose cancer. In other words, the choice is a bogus one and a combination of chemotherapy, surgery and radiation are usually presented as the only options there are.
But suppose you were to be told that there is an alternative to this trio of invasive medication. Suppose it had no side effects. Suppose it not only helped your cancer but also greatly improved your general health overall and suppose it wasn't going to cost you over quarter of a million dollars (The US department of commerce reported that a cancer patients treatment will cost over $375,000).
The alternative does actually exist, and it remarkably simple. Where chemotherapy destroys the immune system, alternative treatment enhances it. Where radiation kills cells indiscriminately alternative medication only targets cancerous cells. Where surgery can often aid in the spread of cancer alternative therapy helps your body to use it's naturally defenses to suppress that spread. The 'cure' is nothing new, it is merely hidden from the public as a viable option, or ridiculed as 'quakery'. Perhaps most surprising of all is that it has been supported by some very reputable names who have put their reputation and careers on the line to get word of it to the public, and without fail that is exactly what they have lost.
When a doctor makes a diagnosis of cancer he will also usually include a prescribed course of action. This usually consists of 3 parts. First they will attempt a surgical removal of the cancer tumor, secondly chemotherapy and radiation will be used to kill the cancer cells. Alternative medicine will usually start with building up the immune system and cleansing the body of toxins. Which is better?
The statistics take a little wading through, but it has been suggested that around 45% of people will achieve a 5-year cure from cancer by following orthodox treatment methods.
This is a misleading statistic - it is a 5 year cure not a total cure. Alternative medicine tends not to measure 5 year cures but rather total cure rate. Orthodox medicine does not release total cure rates though it has been suggested that their cure rate is around 3%. Of those who attempt orthodox treatment and, when told there is nothing more orthodox medicine can do for them ( or that they can afford to pay for) attempt alternative medication the total cure rate could be as high as 50%. Of those who seek alternative treatment instead of any orthodox treatment the likely total cure rate is close to 90%.
So if we have a 90% cure rate from alternative medicine and a 3% cure rate from orthodox medicine, why does the alternative approach not become the standard one. The answer is a little cloudy and is based on those numbers being very hard to prove. Orthodox medicine does not compare itself with alternative medicine and so the only official numbers we see are the increase in effectiveness of their own treatments. So to help you with your decision let's examine what danger cancer presents and how it is dealt with.
The first thing that is probably not explained to you is that a cancer tumor usually is not fatal. A cancer can be benign or malignant, and only if it is malignant does it pose a serious threat(note that a benign tumor that places pressure on a major organ or blocks an artery is dangerous by itself - but not because of the cancer). Thus it is not the cancer that is dangerous to our health, but the spread of the cancer.
Alternative medication looks at the cause of this cancerous growth which is usually the combination of a weakened immunity system and a carcinogen.
The alternative therapy will then seek to address this problem and destroy the atmosphere which leads to the cancer. The increased immune system, combined with fresh delivery of oxygen prevents the cancer from spreading and eventually starves it to death. The beauty is that this process targets only foreign cells, killing off the cancer but not harming (and usually benefiting) the healthy cells.
Orthodox medicine treats the tumor very differently. The tumor is very much the focal point of attack. It is treated as the problem when in fact it is merely a symptom of the problem. Often surgery is the first method of dealing with this problem and while this can remove the tumor it can also release cancer cells into the bloodstream. Remember that it is the spread of cancer that can be fatal, not the cancer itself. Surgery may very well contribute to that spread.
Secondly radiation treats cancer by killing off the cancer cells, but it does so indiscriminately and kills many healthy cells at the same time. Chemotherapy drugs also seek to reduce the size of the tumor and break down the cancer cells, but in doing so they can damage healthy cells and decimate the immune system. Chemotherapy drugs must be administered gradually. The reason for this is that is given all at once they would destroy too many healthy cells and probably kill the patient. The body must be given time to recover between chemotherapy sessions. For some reason it is assumed the cancer will not also recover in that time, when it will most likely spread as a result of damaged adjoining cells and a crippled immunity system.
The biggest frustration for the advancement of alternative cancer treatments is not providing evidence that alternative treatments work, but getting that proof recognized. Registered doctors are not permitted to practice alternative treatment if they wish to remain a member of the AMA, and experiments outside the AMA are usually rubbished as not being performed by real medical professionals. In 1976 when a 'real medical professional', two time Nobel prize winner Linus Pauling, took his experiments outside the country he was able to show in his Scottish study that a cancer patients life expectancy could be extended by 600% by merely administering 10 grams of vitamin C intravenously. Vitamin C is well know for it's ability to build up the human immune system.
40 years ago this research by a Nobel Prize winner proved that natural treatment can greatly improve the life expectancy of a cancer sufferer.
Natural treatment advocates have been able to refine that research to provide even more efficient vitamin C treatments, but mainstream medicine has not even replicated the study.
While the evidence is blurred, lied about, hidden and in same cases destroyed, it seems clear that there is plenty of merit in pursuing further investigation of alternative cancer therapies. There is at enough examples of successful treatment using alternative medicines that it cannot simply be dismissed out of hand as 'quackery' as has been the official line. There are plenty of examples of medical practitioners who have set out to prove alternative natural treatments wrong and have subsequently changed their opinion to support it. Alternative therapy is at least an adequate alternative for orthodox medicine and most likely a very suitable replacement.