People who have been exposed to asbestos may, many years later, come down with mesothelioma. This disease is a difficult condition to treat, and causes serious and usually fatal damage to the lungs. Spontaneous regression of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is rare.
Recently, the Journal of Thoracic Disease published an unusual study on a patient diagnosed with stage III MPM. She had a number of tumors in one lung, and the condition had metastasized into her lymph nodes.
The patient decided to forgo conventional treatments, including surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. Instead, she chose to rely exclusively on an alternative treatment using extracts from two plants. The primary extract used was of Viscum album (European mistletoe), which has been shown to stimulate the immune system. The other plant extract used was Helleborous niger (Christmas rose). This extract has been used since the 1500’s, when Hippocrates and Paracelsus (a Swiss physician known as the “father of toxicology”) used it to treat a variety of medical conditions.
Monthly injections and infusions of mistletoe extract were prescribed by an alternative medicine practitioner, along with periodic administration of winter rose. Additional medications and alternative therapies were also administered to help cope with emotional distress, insomnia, and low thyroid function.
Shortly after beginning treatment, the dry cough resolved. The patient felt well, and her tumors shrank. For more than three years the patient was able to carry on with her daily life feeling well. In total, the patient survived for nearly five years after initial diagnosis. This is a much longer survival rate, and greater degree of feeling well, than is usually achieved using conventional medicine.
Over 50 percent of cancer treatment drugs are derived from plant materials. Recent studies have revealed that daffodil extracts have anticancer properties. A number of mesothelioma patients have claimed that using Moringa tree leaves has improved their health and extended their lives.
These results show more research needs to be done on the ability of plant extracts to fight cancer.
Receiving a diagnosis of mesothelioma can be a frightening and upsetting experience. The lack of a cure can lead patients to feel depressed and even hopeless. But, as the patient in this study shows, it is important to be involved in making choices on how to proceed.
After a diagnosis, be sure to:
Sometimes alternative therapies and conventional therapies will work together, and sometimes they will not. It is important to explore all the options before deciding on your treatment protocol.
Your efforts to deal with a mesothelioma diagnosis should include consulting with an attorney familiar with mesothelioma and experienced in defending cases regarding asbestos exposure. Contact a Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyer at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler. To set up an initial consultation, complete our online form or call 215-569-4000 or 800-369-0899. For more than three decades we have served the people of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey as well as Delaware County, Chester County, and Philadelphia County.