nervous about undergoing Chemo.

Posted , 3 users are following.

I am about to undergo Chemotherapy for Cancer. I

have been researching other, alternative treatments for cancer after reading that the conventional treatments have a low percentage 5 year survival rate (average about 2 to 5%).

     Why is chemotherapy recommended when it has such a poor record of long term success in treating cancer? There seems to be very little data on 10 year survival rates.

I am quite often hearing the question, "Why aren't some of these Alternative Medicine treatments of serious illness subjected to thorough and expensive clinical trials to test their efficacy?"

I had often wondered about this but then I realized that if the treatment

didn't involve an expensive machine or a patentatable substance, then there would be no return on any investment covering the immense cost of such a trial.

For example, if Sodium Bicarbonate was found to effectively treat a serious disease, this substance could be bought anywhere for a few dollars. No return on that investment. This situation would tend to ensure that every treatment of serious disease would always be very expensive regardless whether it was the best one. (with minimum

side effects etc.). Most of the standard cancer treatments involve awfull

side effects and many of the alternative ones are low in side effects.

I am very concerned that I will rush into a treatment that promises little and has awful side effects.

0 likes, 5 replies

Report / Delete

5 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Gary

    difficult question/choice. I'm assuming you have agreed to undergo chemo because your consultant has recommended it? The success of chemo does depend on the type of cancer and the stage of cancer so you need to be advised by your specialist. Only then can you make an informed decision. Alternative therapies rarely 'cure' cancer but do help sometimes with side effects. Sometimes it's possible to combine the two but again you need to discuss with your consultant. You have to do what is right for you based on your circumstances. It's not all about cost.

    Best wishes X

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Thankyou for your reply but I think my main points were not fully understood. Why would anyone have confidence in a treatment that had such a generaly poor record of success? (2% to 4% for a 5 year survival rate). With many of the alternative treatments claiming to have success rates of 50% or higher I thought they would be worth trying despite the fact that they haven't as yet been subjected to clinical trials.

       Conventional treatments don't claim to be cures because they don't attempt to treat the underlying cause of why a person got cancer in the first place. Chemo and radiation are themselves carcinogenic and also can come with long term damage to other tissues in the body.

      Secondly, I think that the high cost of conventional treatment is relevant to me because I look at the bigger picture. In Australia our Medicare system is currently in cost blowout due to the rise in lifestyle related diseases such as Heart disease, Diabetes and cancer, etc. Our government is considering increasing our tax burden in order to cover these increases. There are many people who are already struggling to meet the cost of living and any further financial burden may push them over the edge. On principle, I feel that I don't have any confidence in a treatment regime that promises little while impoverishing the medical system on which we depend.

      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Only you can make your choice about your treatment. As I said cancer treatment success very often depends on the type of cancer and stage of diagnosis. You may not have confidence in chemotherapy but others do and others have been helped. I'm speaking from a UK perspective where chemo treatment is dome on the NHS. There are some cancer drugs not available on the NHS. Good luck with your decision and I hope if you have chemo that it works for you. 
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi Gary, yes chemotherapy is challenging and I felt the same way when I had to go through it three times for 6 months in the last 3 years and still in now.  There are always bad sides to things like this, but I will say these treatments have kept me alive and is killing those nasty cancer tumors and cells.  So I would encourage you to be strong and do what you gotta do to live.  Never give up hope, God is able to heal you.  Chemotherapy drugs today are very affective and imagine if we didn't have any we all would be gone.  Try to look at the positive of the medicines.  I can relate with what you said though, I was fed up a few months ago and was considering just taking my chances without it.  But reality set in and I realized that if I want to live I must do what my Dr. says and chemotherapy was an order.  She has taught me how to manage those nasty side effects and I seem to get through it easier now.  
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi gary, dont worry, your doc will have worked out the right amount of treatment for you , it may make you feel ill but you should be able to carry on a normal life. Mine was ok, uncomfortable but bearable. I had a drip that was the worst but just for 3 hours once every 3 weeks. My cancer was then removed as the chemo had shrank It then they said I had the 'all clear', Im back at work and apart from regular check ups Im fine. Im a 61 year old female, Im assuming you are a young man, so if I can do it so can you. good luck

     

    Report / Delete Reply

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up