Fighting Cancer

Fighting Cancer

Yes, cancer is a dreadful disease and strikes fear in all our hearts. I saw firsthand how the diagnosis of prostate cancer frightened someone near and dear to me, my grandfather. I watched as he mulled the choices provided by his urologist and oncologist and consulted friends who also had battled prostate cancer. Unlike Rhio O’Connor’s circumstances, my grandfather’s cancer was detected in the early stages, thus allowing him months to gather data and study results of various treatments. First and foremost, his urologist advised him that his prostate cancer would not take his life. You see, at the age of 68, my grandfather was a diabetic and had previously undergone a triple heart bypass, two knee replacements and two hip replacements as well as a variety of minor surgeries. He was also a survivor of childhood polio and was thought to be suffering from Post Polio Syndrome. In the end, my grandfather was too nervous to endure the disease and chose external radioactive seeding as his treatment. The non-invasive procedure was successful and grandfather did not experience any recurrences of cancer for the remaining five years of his life. He lived those years to the fullest without wondering when cancer would strike him down.

If I were diagnosed with a deadly cancer and given a dire prognosis, I would not only consult the most prominent doctors available in the field, but would also gather as much data as possible. The internet holds a vast array of information concerning the various kinds of cancer and treatment options, including renowned treatment centers. In addition, media such as television, video cassette tapes and DVDs offer excellent information presented by renowned experts in the field. Many of these sources offer steps in the treatment of cancer, including internal cleansing, diet, prayer, communion with nature, natural supplements, etc. One video presented by a medical practitioner who was beset by a huge malignant breast tumor explores her path to wellness. She believes that all the standard cancer treatments spread cancer rather than cure it. She would not even submit herself to a biopsy, which she believed would spread the disease. She persevered for months with the steps she considered necessary to beat her disease. She was so weak finally that she could not administer the enemas she considered essential and had to rely on others to do so. Her faith and beliefs sustained her, and miraculously she suddenly began improving. Today she is cancer-free and helping others through her proven method. I, too, would consider holistic approaches to healing as well as the traditional chemo, radiation and surgery options. I would investigate every possibility and fall back on the latter options as a last resort.

Because the internet includes exaggerated claims, unreliable anecdotes and some very credible reports concerning alternative therapies for cancer, if I had little time and needed reliable information immediately, I would start with Cancer Monthly. Cancer Monthly provides information about hundreds of cancer treatments so that patients can compare therapy differences, longest survival rates, side effects and toxicity, ultimately leading to better decisions, sustained quality of life, and confidence in the chosen treatment. In addition, t he Researching Alternative Treatments link at lists suggested steps to access information regarding the efficacy of herbs, vitamins or other natural supplements in the treatment of various cancers. This source is an invaluable tool in narrowing the search for credible information to make a treatment decision.

I applaud all those like Rhio O’Connor who educated themselves and were strong enough to defy conventional thinking and develop a protocol specific to their own treatment. Rhio O’Connor was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma in 2001 and given less than a year to live. Like most people diagnosed with this deadly disease, O’Connor did not experience the symptoms until mesothelioma was well advanced even though first exposure to asbestos likely occurred 20 to 50 years earlier. Obviously, this accounts for a low survival rate. Although standard treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy, the position of O’Connor’s tumor made surgery impossible and chemotherapy would not have lengthened his life. Therefore, O’Connor turned to research and a holistic approach to treatment, formulating a daily regimen of over 100 supplements, diet and mind-body medicine. O’Connor survived this very aggressive form of cancer for which there is no known cure for more than seven years and, in 2008, he published his book They Said Months, I Chose Years: A Mesothelioma Survivor’s Story to encourage others to investigate other ways to beat cancer. For extensive information about mesothelioma, its diagnosis, treatment and survivors, visit Cancer Monthly’s website

While there is not a specific approach that is right for every individual, research reveals that a holistic approach to treatment of cancer has been successful in many cases without the devastating effects on quality of life experienced through conventional treatments. A considered approach to long life should include proper nutrition, exercise, absence of stress, and continued education. If we all lived by this credo, not only cancer but other serious illnesses could be held at bay.

By: Schorr, Nicholas

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