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Varna Medical Forum

Complementary And Alternative Medicine In The Treatment Of Cancer

Antonia Hristova, Dimana Dimitrova, Momchil Lambev, Silvia Mihaylova


Searching for alternatives to the treatment of diseases such as cancer is where the efforts of patients and scientists are directed to. Doctors are often display a negative attitude when patients show interest in unconventional therapies and seek advice. In contrast to traditional therapies, which are usually provided only after an official scientific study of their safety and effectiveness, unconventional therapies are not scientifically justified.

About 80% of cancer patients in the United States and Canada and more than 50% of cancer patients in Europe use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in combination or instead of conventional therapy. The dissatisfaction with standard treatment and the side effects of chemotherapy are the most common reasons for using non-traditional methods of treatment.

Amigdaline is one of the most popular, unconventional anticancer treatments used by some 70,000 Americans in the 1970s.

Tetrahydroxycanabinol (THC) contained in cannabis oil has been shown to cause apoptosis of cancer cell lines. Cannabinoids may reduce tumor growth and progression by modulating cancer cell proliferation, tumor angiogenesis and metastasis as characteristic features of cancer.

For over 40 years Renee Kays has treated hundreds of cancer patients with Essiac. She reports that she has been using one of the herbs by injection and the others as tea and has modified the healing formula several times on the basis of her experience.

The four Essiac herbs are roots of burdock (Arctium lappa), Indian rheum (Rheum palmatum), sorrel (Rumex acetosella) and Ulmus fulva or U. rubra. Supporters of Essiac say it strengthens the immune system, improves appetite, relieves pain and improves overall quality of life. They too claim that this can reduce the size of the tumor and prolong the lives of people with various types of cancer.


complementary and alternative medicine, cancer, Amigdalin, tetrahydroxycanabinol, Essiac

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