FORGOING TRADITIONAL CARE FOR HOLISTIC CARE ALONE

RE
RE Member Posts: 4,591 Member
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I am afraid I am not going to be very popular with my stance on this subject but I feel compelled to chime in. I have had three friends who all chose holistic care over traditional. These individuals choose not to have any chemo therapy or radiation, although they did have the surgery to remove the tumors. Two are no longer with us as they passed away less than two years after their surgeries, one was a stage 2 the other a stage 3. The third gal had her cancer spread from one breast to the bones and lung area, she has since had several infusions of chemo and is taking oral meds as well. Her doctor's tell her it will never be in remission they are treating it in hopes they can keep it at the stage it is at now. I am not sure is she is having rads or not. I have spoken with her on several occassions and she regrets her decision to forgo chemo and radiation the first time around.

I know it is not for everyone and we each have to make our own choices, I just would not feel right if I choose only to share the uplifting information we all like to hear.

I wish you all well and hope this is received in the spirit of caring as is my intention.

RE

Comments

  • artizan
    artizan Member Posts: 59
    Interesting...
    I have wondered what the success rates were. I guess I think that the western ways where breast cancer is concerned are saving lives. Holistic practices can be adopted after treatment.
  • mimivac
    mimivac Member Posts: 2,143
    Good comments
    RE, I think your comments are very caring indeed. It is important to look at the whole picture, and for people to have as much information as possible before making these very important decisions. It is so hard to know exactly what to do and going through this is so emotional already. I am very traditionalist in my approach to treatment, but I also believe that holistic ways have their place -- just not as a complete alternative. Frankly, I would be extremely nervous to forgo treatment that has saved so many lives. But that is me and others are different. Traditional therapy is not perfect, but I am a believer in evidence based science, and I've seen so many who have beat this disease going that route. I'm not saying other people have not had success doing other things, just that I personally would not feel right with holistic practices alone. I am well aware also that traditional treatments can have their own very serious side effects, but for me I believe that the benefits outweigh the risks.

    I am also a very strong believer in good health and exercise, and really do think they cut recurrence rates. I think these discussions are productive and that it's good to share our opinions without condemning other people's choices. This is the wonderful thing about discussion and debate. Thank you, RE.

    Mimi
  • mmontero38
    mmontero38 Member Posts: 1,510
    My point of view
    I agree with you Re. I wouldn't feel comfortable myself just going with strictly the holistic route fighting this disease. I personally think that once diagnosed and going through traditional treatments, it would be wise to live a more healthier lifestyle by watching what we eat and exercising. Not only is it good in maybe preventing recurrence but it keeps us healthier as a whole. Diet and exercise have been proven to avoid other health risks. Now, that doesn't mean that someone may feel differently, and I do respect that, but for me, the traditional way was the way to go. Hugs, Lili
  • Eil4186
    Eil4186 Member Posts: 949

    My point of view
    I agree with you Re. I wouldn't feel comfortable myself just going with strictly the holistic route fighting this disease. I personally think that once diagnosed and going through traditional treatments, it would be wise to live a more healthier lifestyle by watching what we eat and exercising. Not only is it good in maybe preventing recurrence but it keeps us healthier as a whole. Diet and exercise have been proven to avoid other health risks. Now, that doesn't mean that someone may feel differently, and I do respect that, but for me, the traditional way was the way to go. Hugs, Lili

    No brainer
    I agree with Mimi's train of thought. Traditional treatments have actual data in black and white that documents successful outcomes/proof from clinical trials and years of successful use in patients. When faced with such a horrible disease such as cancer, I think it would be very dangerous to forgo proven treatment for something that may or may not help to some degree and certainly cannot cure.

    Once through with treatment, maintainig a heart healthy diet, regular exercise, and avoiding smoking and alcohol can help reduce the risk of recurrence. There are long-term studies that prove that.

    My heart breaks for Re's three friends because I think each of them sealed their fate. If only we could go back in time and make a different choice......Re I hope that your friend with the recurrence will follow her doctor's advise and be able to keep her cancer at bay.
  • young_one
    young_one Member Posts: 67
    Thank you, RE
    I agree. I am always very afraid for someone who does not take the treatment that they should. I have no issue with alternatives or holistic medicine. It wasn't the route that I chose but I think if you are going to go that route it should be *complimentary*. I, of all people, know what the side effects of traditional medicine are. I took more chemo and radiation than most. I even took Avastin. No, it's not fun. Or easy. But it's do-able. And it gave me the best shot I had at success. I had a woman bring me a jar of mud and water from Mexico that was supposed to cure me if I drank/ate it. I know she was trying to help but seriously... all the studies and modern medicine and research that is going on and they just missed the cure for cancer? And it's a jar of mud? This struck me as funny.
  • kevindee
    kevindee Member Posts: 72
    agree
    i too agree with re and all . you've seen it for yourself what better proof. i feel also for the ones that were scared probably and really thought they were doing the right thing. i couldnt think straight for awhile when i first found out{ in fact im still having problems with that}lol . there just soo much thinking to do when this cancer comes on you we all want to live and hopefully make the right choices.
  • chenheart
    chenheart Member Posts: 5,159
    Alternative Therapy
    Well, I agree, RE~ you are all but preaching to the choir! Afterall, we are friends/sisters in here. And where is "here"? The ACS discussion boards! For the most part (and I know better than to say ALL of us) we on these boards have opted for more traditional treatment methods. Most of the posts here talk about surgery, chemotherapy, radiation etc etc. We also talk about supplements, and healthy food and lifestyle choices. The operative word being SUPPLEMENTAL~ in conjuction with, not as a replacement for the path we are walking .

    I dare say, if alternative therapy had a better track record, most of us would have chosen it over "poison" and its resultant nausea, mouth-sores, hair-loss, ports,and joint pain, to name just a few side effects!!!

    Perhaps alternative meds work better in non Western countries . Research shows that Japanese women had lower incidences of BC until recently when they adopted a more traditional western high fat diet.

    My heart is so saddened by your losses, RE. These women no doubt made informed choices, and wanted to have long, healthy cancer-free lives, just as all of us do. I wish it were easier to know what to do, and that killing the beast was a no-brainer. Alas, it isn't.

    Here's to 2009, and getting one step closer to finding a cure....damn cancer, anyway!

    Hugs,
    Claudia
  • Marcia527
    Marcia527 Member Posts: 2,729
    care
    I had traditional care also. Chemo was hard but it shrunk the cancer. I also agree that we each have to make our own choices. I try not to interfere in other peoples lives. I've seen people take advantage of others for profit. I'd hate to see that happen on this board. Sometimes you just have to say something.
  • RE
    RE Member Posts: 4,591 Member
    Thank you
    Thank you all for discussing this with me, it is a concern of mine and since I have recently seen several posts regarding this subject I wanted to let others know what my experience has been.

    I agree that holistic as a compliment to traditional therapy may very well have its merits. It is important to eat right and exercise as well.

    Once again thank you all for your unwavering support, you are am amazing group!

    RE
  • 24242
    24242 Member Posts: 1,398
    Still the Choice is our
    Still the Choice is our own.
    I would be intersted in knowing if these women had some quality to their lives that they might not have had fighting the side effects of all the treatment phases of our diseases. I was 36 at the time of my diagnosis with stage 3 IDC Breast Cancer with 11 out of 21 positive nodes. It was made quite clear to me my only chance for survival was aggressive therapy something I had to think seriously about.
    The side effects of all the treatments made my fight for life that much longer but finally coming out the other side. Do I believe there is a cure of Cancer, NO...
    I do believe that we have been given a chance and our lives prolonged for how ever long and often choosing to live a healthier life can increase those years. There is and the choice we make in our own survivalm having to be something we choose for oursleves. It isn't an easy choice sometimes and I don't blame those who want to continue feeling pretty good rather than contribute to ill health with some of the treatment phases out there.
    There is so much to take in, but it was just made clear to me that I had a child and I had to do what was necessary to still be there for him and that helped to clear the way to fighting for life.
    Love to you all
    Tara