Posted May 3, 2013: by Bill Sardi
The anticipation builds for anti-cancer drugs that target a broad array of genes that combat various types of cancer in different organs rather than a different drug for each cancer by their anatomical origin. Instead of anti-cancer drugs for each organ, such as lung, prostate, breast and colon, geneticists now say new drugs in development may address many forms of cancer.
The first examples of this new thinking are studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine showing uterine cancer and leukemia have similar genetic fingerprints and could be treated by the same drug. A large effort to this end is being commandeered at the Cancer Genome Atlas website.
However, the thinking is far too narrow now that geneticists know diseases are integrated via gene networks. An online map can be viewed showing genes in many diseases overlap one another (note: it takes time to load).
Posted February 13, 2013: by Bill Sardi
Should 500,000 British women (2.4 million U.S. women) take Tamoxifen to prevent breast cancer? A British health agency report (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) says so. Families with a history of breast cancer should also undergo genetic testing, says this same agency.
Tamoxifen was presented by this British health agency as an alternative to having a preventative mastectomy, or breast removal. (However, a recent 20-year study of aged women showed Tamoxifen is no better than mastectomy in regards to survival.)
According to a study, which is not available for examination, 29 cancers and nine deaths could be prevented for every 1,000 women taking tamoxifen for five years. That comes to 1 in 34 Tamoxifen users who would benefit from taking this drug over a 5-year period while subjecting themselves to a long list of potential side effects.
Posted November 28, 2012: by Bill Sardi
Since the 1970s when Drs. Linus Pauling and Ewan Cameron first utilized intravenous vitamin C to prolong the survival of cancer patients by four-fold, a war has ensued between modern medicine and vitamin C advocates. Mayo Clinic doctors set out to disprove Pauling and employed single-dose oral vitamin C which did not reach sufficient blood concentrations to transiently produce hydrogen peroxide to selectively kill cancer cells. Finally, 28 year later, National Institutes of Health researchers conceded that intravenous vitamin C does indeed kill cancer cells. More recently Drs. Hilary Roberts and Steve Hickey of Manchester, England conclusively showed that even oral doses of vitamin C if taken at frequent intervals could achieve concentrations that can kill cancer cells.
Posted September 30, 2012: by Bill Sardi
It is not surprising to learn that Big Pharma has shown no interest in what may become the world’s first proven cancer prevention pill. If big profits aren’t promised, pharmaceutical companies predictably pass on such a development.
The pill is a relatively safe FDA-approved generic drug, prescribed millions of times to help control diabetes, and it costs maybe 10-cents a day. But what is surprising is that public health authorities appear to be remiss in announcing this breakthrough. They are the agency in society commissioned to address important public health issues such as this.
Posted September 8, 2012: by Bill Sardi
Recall the data claiming beta carotene should not be consumed by smokers because of a slight increased risk for lung cancer.
Here in the study below we get a clearer picture where vitamin D is protective against lung cancer but beta carotene, the precursor to vitamin A, then results in a diminishment of that effect. So it would only be high-dose beta carotene that would pose this problem. Initially, the smoker/beta carotene lung cancer problem was identified among smokers in Finland, a country at a northern latitude where vitamin D levels would be low.
Posted August 13, 2012: by Bill Sardi
One of the dirty little secrets of modern medicine, and a reason why healthcare costs are so high, is that researchers and clinicians are trying to profiteer by inventing and delivering the highest cost medicine. Ten-cent cures are not to be found. Patentable, costly man-made medicines reign. Natural medicines are shunned or ignored.
Such is the case where British scientists claim they have discovered high iron levels in the colon/rectum raise the risk for cancer and say they are avidly searching for chelating (key-lay-ting) molecules that will mop up the iron and reduce the risk or even treat active colon/rectal cancer. They say they hope to start using these molecules in the coming years. But high-risk individuals with polyps in their colon or who have a history of bowel inflammation can reach for a cure that is already at hand.
Posted July 19, 2012: by Bill Sardi
Been saying this for over a decade – surgical removal of a cancerous prostate gland is only problematic and does not increase survival. Years ago a government task force showed that watchful- waiting is preferred over treatment for prostate cancer, but the medical industry worked to abolish that agency and erase that science. Prostate cancer surgery simply makes many men impotent and incontinent.
With roughly 100,000 surgical procedures to remove a cancerous prostate gland every year, and urologists making roughly $300 million to perform the surgery, one wonders if the newly passed Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) is going to cease paying for this procedure. Stipulations in the Affordable Care Act state that unproven or disproven medical technologies will no longer be reimbursed by health insurance plans.
Posted March 31, 2012: by Knowledge of Health
News reports herald a possible future cure for cancer, a cure that appears so convincing in the animal laboratory that it tempts many to think a true cancer cure may soon be at hand. But careful examination suggests what is clearly a cure in the animal lab may not be a practical cure in the oncology clinic.
In recent times there has been a renaissance in immunotherapy for cancer. Immunotherapy aims to activate an efficient immune response against tumors or prevent cancers from occurring in the first place. Decades ago cancer researchers dismissed this approach in favor of the toxic cancer cell-killing treatments that now predominate. But now cancer researchers are reporting some breakthroughs, at least in the animal laboratory.
Posted October 27, 2011: by Bill Sardi
The CNN article entitled “Steve Jobs: A Difficult Patient” provoked hundreds to comment online. Here is a sampling of some of the responses:
Mr. Jobs survived by nearly 9 years a slow-growing form of pancreatic cancer first discovered in 2003. He initially shunned surgery (a drastic operation called a Whipple procedure) which is a very trying operation for surgeon and patient. You can get a view of this complicated operation at the Mayo Clinic website here. The operation involves removal of the head of the pancreas where most tumors originate as well as removal of the gall bladder and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum) and reconnection of the digestive organs.
Posted October 10, 2011: by Bill Sardi
The e-mails, telephone calls and personal inquiries were continuous. Since 2004 when Steve Jobs was first diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, so many people, knowing the dire prognosis of this form of cancer (97% succumb within 2 years of diagnosis), and knowing I had written a 500-page book about cancer, asked if I would write to Mr. Jobs about promising alternative therapies.
Finally, after so many inquiries (a couple from Apple employees), I relented and wrote a letter and sent it to his office at Apple and suggested he consult with his doctors about well-referenced natural remedies, while still unproven, were the most promising.
Doctors kept Mr. Jobs alive for 7 years with chemotherapy and finally a liver transplant. But the immune-stunting drugs employed to avoid organ rejection did him in say news reports. Mr. Jobs had some quality of life to the end, saying his goodbyes and staying on as the visible leader of Apple till his end.