Volume 9 Issue 2 - Patricia Peat

 

Originally published in  icon Volume 9 Issue 2 2010

Nurse Patricia Peat

Patricia Peat is a registered nurse. Following years of experience in oncology, combined with research into natural approaches to cancer she now runs Cancer Options.

Cancer Options is a specialised team of practitioners who provide individual consultancy and coaching into treatment and making decisions for all approaches to cancer.

Details of their services are available at www.canceroptions.co.uk or by calling 0845 009 2041.


Q I have heard of different ways of giving chemotherapy that do not involve using maximum dosages. I have been advised to have chemotherapy but am terrified of the side effects and long term damage and would prefer to investigate other methods. Can you tell me are there any different options on having chemotherapy? I feel like I should have it but am terrified of the side effects?
A Options are mainly available in Europe and America more than here. One is Insulin potentiation therapy. In this technique they firstly give insulin to lower the body’s blood sugar levels. They then administer a small dose of chemotherapy (approx 20% of normal dosage) with glucose. The cancer cells rapidly uptake the glucose and chemotherapy at the same time, this seems to reduce the ability of the cells to be resistant to chemotherapy. I have seen the smaller dosage used obtain some impressive results comparable to the larger dosages given.

Metronomic chemotherapy is still in clinical study and being used in more stable situations. It is repetitive, with low doses of chemotherapy drugs designed to minimise toxicity and target the endothelium or tumour stroma as opposed to targeting the tumor itself. The toxicity is minimal and quality of life not affected by its administration. It is unlikely to be useful for aggressive problems that need a quick result and there is a way to go in establishing for which scenarios it will work best. Most of the integrative clinics in Europe are using it alongside their metabolic programmes as it works very well integratively.

For individual tumour sites there are also variations on chemotherapy being injected intra-tumourly - straight into the tumour and, intravascularly - into the blood supply leading to the tumour.

Q I have mantle cell lymphoma diagnosed 18 months ago. My oncologist wanted me to have chemotherapy but I wanted to try metabolic approaches as I am aware that there was a high chance of it coming back after the chemotherapy and want to put it off as long as possible. I feel great and have no symptoms but obviously would like to confirm exactly how I am doing. I asked my oncologist for a scan but he has refused as he was not happy when I refused chemotherapy and says he is not obliged to help me. Do you know what the legal standing is on this? Does he not have a duty of care?

A I have checked for you with the Department of Health and your oncologist is correct, this is part of their reply; A patient cannot insist on being given treatment that the healthcare professionals responsible for that patient consider to be clinically unnecessary, futile or inappropriate. Patients can make their wishes known and clinicians should take in to account the overall care of a patient, but treatment and monitoring remains a matter for the clinical judgement of the healthcare professional concerned

Just for contrast, this is a front page quote from the website NHS CHOICES ALL ABOUT CHOICE

Your choices include more than just which GP or hospital to use. You also have choices about your treatment decisions and your everyday lifestyle
Q I am on chemotherapy and have a mouth full of really painful ulcers. They are healing but I am dreading the next round as I can barely eat. Do you have any ideas to help?
A When ulcers are very bad the best thing is traumeel lotion, wash around the mouth and spit out. This will greatly relieve the pain and soreness of them.

For less severe problems the following remedies will help; de-glycyrrhizinated liquorice (DGL) has been found to be very useful in the healing of mouth ulcers, which has been supported by clinical studies. The standard dosage is 1-2 chewable tablets containing 400 mg DGL, taken between or 20 minutes before meals.

To be effective the DGL must mix with saliva thoroughly in the mouth, so it is important to buy chewable tablets and not capsules. If your mouth is too sore to chew the tablets, then let them slowly dissolve in the mouth, or crush them and mix them with a little cold water.

Garlic oil is excellent for healing mouth ulcers (rub the ulcers with the cut, squeezed end of a clove).

Lemon balm is anti viral and prevents secondary infections (use lemon balm tea as an anti viral mouthwash).

Organic wheat grass is very soothing to mouth ulcers, either juice what grass and swish around mouth and gargle, or use organic powder.

Though good hygiene and regular brushing is encouraged, using toothpaste containing Sodium Lauryl Sulphate will contribute to the development of ulcers whilst on chemotherapy. Ensure you use toothpaste free from this. (See the centerfold in this issue of icon)

Advice from The Cancer Experts - your questions answered
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