If you or a loved one has cancer, you?re looking for the best possible cancer treatment possible. After looking into conventional and alternative therapies, all the choices might confuse you. But which one is best? The answer, which comes from China, might just surprise you.
When I visited China last year, our tour leader was a bright "with it" man. But I was astonished to find that he had never visited a traditional Chinese doctor. He preferred allopathic medicine. I discovered that this wasn?t unusual. Many young, modern Chinese don?t use older traditional methods, such as herbs and acupuncture. Meanwhile, in our country, more people are switching from allopathic medicine to integrative medicine - including traditional Chinese medicine. That?s so like us: to choose either one extreme or another.
Now a Chinese study is finding that nearly half of women with breast cancer are using traditional Chinese medicine. Rather than argue with their choices, some hospitals are opting for a combined treatment. That?s exactly what many doctors of integrative medicine are doing right here in the U.S. And it?s working better than either approach alone.
Several hospitals in China have recognized this preferred change in treatment. They?re using detoxifying and immune-enhancing herbs along with chemotherapy. They?re using acupuncture, which includes massage, needling, herbs, and nutrition. And in this country, we?re beginning to include infrared breast thermography in addition to mammograms. This helps us know which cancer treatments are working. The combination of the old and the new appears to be the best cancer treatment you can find.
I recently saw a young woman with stage-4 (advanced) rectal cancer. She was in her 30s, a vegetarian who grew her own organic foods and made cheese from her healthy goats. She was willing to make changes to her diet where needed. But she wasn?t willing to consider surgery. Her doctor, who practices integrative medicine, thought that her preferred approach would fail.
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It took me over an hour to convince her that combining conventional with non-conventional treatments gave her the best odds. Something I said got through and she agreed to the surgery along with an integrative program. This combination worked for her. I saw her a few weeks ago and she looks and feels terrific.
If you have cancer, add an acupuncturist to your team. Or a naturopath. Or a doctor of integrative medicine. Their expertise will expand your treatment options and give you more complete care.
Many conventional cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy, are toxic. A traditional oncologist won?t know how to put you on a safe, effective detoxification program. A doctor of integrative medicine will.
Cancer is a disease that affects your immune system. Acupuncture and herbs can give it the support you need to recover - and they won?t interfere with the chemotherapy or radiation.
Don?t confine your treatment for cancer or any serious illness to one point of view.
Get the best treatment possible. Having difficulty finding a doctor of integrative medicine? Call the American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM) at 888-439-6891 for a list of doctors in your area.
Your voice of reason in Women's Health,
Dr. Janet Zand
Smith, T, "Merged sciences may aid cancer treatment," Associated Press, April 22, 2007.