Archive for the ‘Complementary and Alternative Medicine’ Category

Cancer As Big Business; Is There a Repressed Cure?

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Posted 23 Apr 2012 — by James Street
Category Complementary and Alternative Medicine
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Saturday, April 21, 2012 – 21:44 Special to HuntingtonNews.Net

Cancer is a disease defined by abnormal growth of cells into tumors, according to the molecular theory. Have we been misinformed  about the definition of the word Health and how to cure cancer.

Watch and learn as this video describes the true definition of the word health that 99% of Americans don’t know about the alleged cure for cancer, skin cancer, lung cancer, graviola and cancer, brain tumor, stomach cancer, pituitary cancer, liver cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, breast cancer, leukemia, Kidney Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Colon Cancer, ovarian cancer, Thyroid Cancer. Understand what it takes to be the 1% that lives the life of your dreams on the Cruise Ship!

For an astonishing alternative perspective on medical treatment, you can view this intriguing video concerning prescription drugs versus homopathic (holistic medicine)

Fundraiser planned for unexpected cancer survivor

by Kelli Easterling

16-year-old Jonathan Hernandez has been battling metastic osteosarcoma, bone cancer that doctors said had spread to his lungs, for about two years.

When he was diagnosed, doctors told his parents that the cancer was in an advanced stage and that the prognosis was typically very poor, according to his mother, Diana Janica, a Spanish teacher at Richmond Senior High School.

“The doctors told us that if he received chemotherapy treatment, he would maybe live for two years,” said Janica. “After that, it was likely his kidneys and liver would shut down.”

Janica’s husband, Pablo Hernandez, discovered a unique treatment option when talking to his sister, a doctor in Columbia, South America.

She told the frantic parents about the Gerson Institute. The Institute uses a whole-body approach to healing that supposedly boosts the body’s immune system, and other defenses, to cure cancer, arthritis, heart disease and allergies.

Since their son had only a small chance of surviving the chemo treatments, the couple decided they had to go out on a limb and try something different than they were being offered at the hospitals.

“They were basically telling me he was going to die, but that he should do chemotherapy anyway,” said Janica.

The Gerson Diet is high in vitamins, minerals and fluids, and low in sodium and fats. The typical daily diet consists of three full vegetarian meals and 10-13 glasses of fresh raw juice. All ingredients must be organic, fresh and washed in distilled water, to avoid excess fluoride exposure. The diet is supplemented with things like niacin, potassium compound and flax seed oil. The strictest form of this diet will continue for two to four years.

It is a very demanding program to stick with. On top of the sometimes outrageous costs of purchasing fresh, organic produce, the juice has to be made fresh, every hour from 8 a.m.-7 p.m. This means his father stays home with him during the day, and works at night once his mother is home from school.

Today, Jonathan’s mother is happy to report that Jonathan’s cancer is officially shrinking.

“We went to Chapel Hill December 29 and the oncologists said the lesions in his lungs are getting smaller,” said Janica. “His bone cancer is regressing. They told me when he was diagnosed that he should be dead by now! We are so happy. This type of cancer does not usually get smaller – this is amazing. For the first time, the oncologist did not mention chemotherapy.”

Jonathan reported that he has been seeing his doctor every three months, but now the doctors have told him his appointments can be scheduled six months apart.

“That means I’m doing really good,” he said. “My breathing is at 100 percent now. And I’ve gotten a lot taller – I’m almost six feet tall now.”

Jonathan is home schooled because he has a weaker immune system and can’t take the risk of being exposed to germs.

“I miss school a lot because I have to figure out a lot of the work on my own,” he said. “I’d like other kids to know that they’re lucky to be able to go to class and have their teachers there.”

While health insurance would help with the costs of conventional cancer therapy, it doesn’t acknowledge this type of treatment. The burden of paying about $2,500 a month in supplies fell squarely on the family – until community members stepped in.

Richmond Senior High faculty, staff and students have been there for the family, spreading the word and helping any way they can. Churches and neighbors soon found out about the unique situation and have also been helping along the way.

A new fund raising committee has formed, and is planning an all-day event and barbecue fundraiser for the the boy at Pat’s Kitchen, in Rockingham.

“I’m their neighbor, and this is their only child,” said committee member, Susanne McInnis. “My heart just goes out to them. They were brought here as missionaries from their home, and when Jonathan was diagnosed they had no family here to turn to. The community is their family now.”

Pat’s Kitchen hosted a fundraiser for Jonathan last year, and raised $9,700 for Nature’s Own, the supplier of Jonathan’s organic fruits and vegetables.

“We’ve put too much into Jonathan getting better to give up on him now,” said Marshall Berry, co-owner of Pat’s Kitchen. “We’ve been hosting benefits here since we opened for business, and the Lord has blessed us tremendously. We are happy to be able to give back.”

“We’re excited about Jonathan’s progress,” said McInnis. “At one time, he couldn’t breath very good, but recently he was able to play the flute at church.”

Encouraged by Jonathan’s progress over the past two years, McInnis teamed with Sandra Parker, Pam Dillman, Betty Brigman, Debbie Webb, Lisa Britt and Pat Britt to plan another event at Pat’s Kitchen to help pay for Jonathan’s food.

On Saturday, March 24 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Pat’s Kitchen will host a pork barbecue and fried chicken plate sale – dine in or carry out – for $7 per plate.

Delivery is available for orders of five or more.

“Marshall won the Kansas City Cook-off with his barbecue, and his fried chicken won a blue ribbon at the State Fair,” said McInnis.

There will be live entertainers at the restaurant all day, including original member of beach music group O’Kaysions, Ed Dement, singing “I’m a Girl Watcher,” a self-proclaimed cousin of Elvis Presley, doing spot-on impersonations, Brookes and Dunn impersonators, other country music impersonators, gospel singers and beach tunes.

There will be an auction at 5 p.m., hosted by Iron Horse Auction.

Plate tickets are available for sale now at Pat’s Kitchen, or plates can be purchased the day of the event.

Raffle tickets are also available now for $1. A 32” flat-screen television from R.W. Goodman Co. and neighbors and a gas grill will be raffled off March 24 at the event.

“So many businesses have donated for the auction, I can’t even thank them all,” said McInnis.

For more information about the event, or to donate auction items or funding to Jonathan’s cause, contact 910-895-1009, 910-206-1009 or 910-895-0683.

“The Lord is good,” said Janica. “The Lord is teaching us to live by faith, this is an adventure! We are trying to enjoy this time while we are seeing what the Lord has next for Jonathan. This has helped Jonathan to focus on the future and what the Lord has for him in the following hours, days and years. He can really enjoy little details in life as miracles for him now since he did not expect to live this long.”

— Staff Writer Kelli Easterling can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 18, or by email at keasterling@heartlandpublications.com.

On leaping to conclusions about a neurosurgeon and Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski

Category: Alternative medicineCancerMedicineSurgery
Posted on: December 27, 2011 10:45 AM, by Orac

Another Christmas is over, and we’re settling in to that strange week between Christmas and New Years when, or so it would seem, most of the world isn’t working except for retail. I’m half taking the week off from work in that I don’t plan on going into the office if I can possibly avoid it, but will be starting up a couple of grants for the February/March NIH cycle and dealing with a couple of nagging issues left over from before the holidays. Regular readers might have noticed that ScienceBlogs had a bit of a glitch beginning sometime in the early morning hours of Christmas morning and not ending until yesterday sometime. In essence, although you could read the blogs, you couldn’t comment, and all the bloggers were locked out of the Movable Type back end. Since that provided me an excellent excuse to take a day off from blogging, I did. I was still recovering from the food and wine coma of the last two days anyway and probably didn’t have anything coherent to say, if I ever do.

But what should await me this morning when I decided to take a look and see if ScienceBlogs were fully up and running again? It’s something I had hoped to be able to ignore until 2012, having blogged enough about it over the last month or so. I’m referring to the “brave maverick” cancer doctor Stanislaw Burzynski and his Burzynski Clinic. Read the links for the full, Orac-ian deconstruction of what Burzynski appears to be doing, but the brief version is that he uses what he calls antineoplastons, which he claims to have originally isolated from urine back in the 1960s and 1970s but now synthesizes chemically, to treat cancer. It turns out that these antineoplastons are nothing more than the metabolic products of a real drug, phenylbutyrate. This is a drug that was initially used to treat urea cycle disorders but has also shown (very) modest promise in treating some forms of cancer and that these days Dr. Burzynski appears to be switching over to using off-label phenylbutyrate but still calling it “antineoplastons” and charging outrageous sums of money to his patients. In addition, these days, seeing a profit opportunity, he’s jumped on the genomic bandwagon–incompetently–and started offering what he calls “personalized, gene-targeted therapy,” which, when looked at more closely, is really nothing more than a simplistic use of a commercially available test to pick out a witch’s brew of chemotherapy, targeted therapies, and antineoplastons phenylbutyrate, put together with little or no thought to synergistic toxicities or whether they interfere with each other’s actions or not. All of this, he sells as being “not chemotherapy” (it is; it’s just incompetently administered chemotherapy) and “natural” (it’s no more natural than taxol, which was originally derived from the bark of the Pacific yew tree and turned into a chemotherapy drug). Through all of this, Burzynski has tried, through his PR flack, to silence bloggers who criticize him and thereby protect the lucrative cult of personality he’s built around his name. Now, it appears that there is another aspect of Burzysnki’s practice I need to comment on, as mentioned on Pharyngula (crossposted here) and Furious Purpose, and that’s physicians who send their patients to Burzynski.

By way of background, I’ve noted before that there is a particularly disturbing aspect of Burzynski’s practice. That’s how his patients, convinced that Burzynski can save them (or, if they’re parents, that he can save their child) will, understandably go to extreme lengths to raise the often hundreds of thousands of dollars Burzynski charges to apply his science-y-sounding woo to cancer. It is not at all uncommon for these families set up charities designed to raise money, or, as I put it a couple of years ago, to harness the generosity of kind-hearted strangers to pay for woo. In fact, it was a couple of high-profile cases, one involving U.K. performer Peter Kay, who did two charity concerts for a Burzynski patient, that originally brought the attention of the skeptical blogosphere on Burzynski. More precisely, it was the reaction of one Marc Stephens, who claimed to represent the Burzynski Clinic and in that claimed capacity issued legal threats against bloggers, that brought the attention (and wrath) of the skeptical blogosphere down on Burzynski. In any case, I thought that that was the worse aspect of Burzynski’s activities, that he seemingly encouraged his patients with terminal cancer to go to such lengths to raise money, the better to enrich himself. There is now, however, another aspect that could be at least as disturbing. I haven’t made up my mind yet, because I don’t know if what I’m learning about this aspect of Burzynski’s activities. If what PZ and Furious Purpose write is accurate, then Dr. Teo is about as unethical as it gets. However, I suspect things are not as simple as what is being written.

Meet Dr. Charles Teo, a neurosurgeon currently in Australia. Apparently, he has a history of funneling patients to Burzynski, although it’s not clear at all to me whether it’s Dr. Teo who promotes Dr. Burzynski or whether he’s just working with patients who have decided to go to Dr. Burzynski. For example, here is one patient description cited:

After much research and the help of many friends we discovered Dr Charles Teo from Prince of Wales Private Hospital in Sydney, who performs surgery on inoperable brain tumors. Dr Teo is a neurosurgeon who has pioneered a method of minimally invasive brain surgery and has successfully performed around 5000 operations. Dr Teo has offered to operate on David and at this stage the operation is scheduled for Friday, 20th September 2002. David, with the support of his family will fly to Sydney on Wednesday, 18th September 2002.This process is not a cure, however, it is designed to relieve the pressure by reducing the size of the tumor, he will need further treatment to kill off any remaining pieces of the tumor. The treatment being researched at the moment is antineoplastons treatment which is administered by the Burzynski Clinic in Houston, USA.

One notes that this is from 2002 and 2003 and that it is not at all clear from the description above that Dr. Teo suggested that this family go to visit Burzynski or that this patient is evidence of Dr. Teo taking advantage of dying patients.

In all fairness, this case is a bit more damning:

However, Braydon’s mother Zoe Cobb hoped the Sebastopol toddler could begin treatment soon at the Burzynski Clinic in Houston, Texas.”We’ll talk more about it with Charlie (Dr Charles Teo) this afternoon,” Zoe said. “We’re just off for the MRI scans now.”

The Burzynski Clinic, named after founder Stanislaw Burzynski, specialises in individual cancer treatments.

Zoe said they had discussed taking Braydon to Texas with Dr Teo, who said he felt it would be a good option for the four-year-old.

However, before you decide, take a look at this video:

And this one as well:

There is a type of surgeon who represents the true “brave maverick” in that he is highly skilled, highly confident, and willing to take on seemingly “hopeless” cases. Surgeons like this will often, as described above, operate on patients who have either been operated on before by other surgeons who couldn’t fix what was wrong or been turned down by other surgeons as “inoperable.” Of course, “inoperable” is not a hard-and-fast word in that what is inoperable to one surgeon might well be operable to another. It’s also a very fine line in that this is an area where science- and evidence-based medicine collide with personal surgical skill. There are surgeons out there who are just so good that they can physically do with their hands what other surgeons, talented and experienced as they might be, cannot. Alternatively, they are far less risk-averse than the typical surgeon in their specialty and are therefore willing to attempt things that other surgeons won’t, such as the resection of “unresectable” brainstem tumors. Where daring ends and recklessness begins is a very fuzzy line with surgeons such as these. When they fail, they fail spectacularly, but when they succeed sometimes the result is the patient described in the video above. Surgeons such as these might very well cause a lot of complications and unnecessary suffering through aggressive–even reckless–pushing of boundaries. However, they also push the envelope (which Dr. Teo even says explicitly that he is trying to do in the second video), which can lead to advances in surgery and can sometimes save patients thought to be unsavable. Where the balance between the harm and good done by such surgones lies is, again, not a trivial thing to figure out.

It probably doesn’t help that Dr. Teo has other aspects of the “brave maverick” doctor. For example, if you search for his name plus “cell phone cancer,” you’ll find a plethora of articles and videos featuring Dr. Teo warning against the dangers of cell phones as a cause of brain cancer:

Brain cancer surgeon Charlie Teo has urged people to put mobile phones on loudspeaker, move clock radios to the foot of the bed and wait until microwaves have finished beeping before opening them.The controversial Sydney specialist told a Melbourne fundraiser that although the jury was still out on mobile phones and other forms of electromagnetic radiation, we should not take risks.

“Even though the jury’s not in, just to err on the side of safety I would try and limit the amount of electromagnetic radiation that you’re exposed to,” he said.

“The American government, for example, recommends that all electrical appliances should be put at the foot of the bed and not the head of the bed.

Then there’s this video:

At around the 3:35 mark, Dr. Teo is featured saying unequivocally that he believes mobile phones can cause brain cancer. Later, the reporter engages in a blatant bit of fear mongering by noting that mobile phones use microwaves and you wouldn’t think of putting your ear up next to a microwave oven.

The stupid in that video, it burns brightly, rather like what would happen if you put metal in a microwave oven.

So, we can see that Dr. Teo is not a very good judge of epidemiology or basic science. Yes, I’ve refused to concede on many occasions that a link between cell phones and cancer is physically impossible, as some physicists have unwisely done based on a Cancer Biology 101 understanding of cancer, but I do consider it incredibly implausible that there is such a link. Maybe not homeopathy-level implausible, but almost. Also, as I (and others) have pointed out time and time again, not only is a link between cell phones and cancer incredibly implausible based on what we know about physics and biology, but the epidemiological evidence is overwhelmingly against such a link existing. There’s no convincing evidence for an increase in the incidence of brain cancers and no good evidence that the laterality of brain tumors correlates with the side of the head people hold their phones to. In brief, there is no good reason, based on prior plausibility informed by basic science or on epidemiological evidence, to think that mobile phone radiation causes brain cancers.

But Dr. Teo believes it does, which makes me think it’s not all that much of a stretch to think that he would be susceptible to the fancy-sounding blandishments of a charlatan like Dr. Burzynski.

And that’s why I think that what’s more likely to be going on here is something way more nuanced than what PZ and Furious Purpose think. Subject to change as more information comes in, I reject, based on what I’ve been able to find out thus far, the contention that Dr. Teo is operating on patients with inoperable brain cancer in order to make money off of them. Certainly neither PZ nor Furious Purpose have made a convincing case for that. A far more likely explanation is that Dr. Teo is one of those “cowboy surgeons” who will operate on risky patients that other surgeons won’t. When he agrees to operate on someone with an “inoperable” brain cancer, from what I can tell he almost certainly believes that he can do what other surgeons can’t: Remove the tumor and possibly cure the patient. It appears that, often enough, he’s right. Based on what I’ve been able to find out, unless there is more information that I’m not aware of, I have little choice but to say that I consider it at best highly irresponsible (and–dare I say?–most unskeptical) and at worse downright scurrilous to leap to the conclusion that Dr. Teo is intentionally operating on inoperable brain tumors just to make money and then to funnel patients to the Burzynski Clinic, as PZ does here (and here):

Teo is an Australian surgeon who has a brilliant scheme for anyone with a bit of surgical skill and a complete lack of conscience. He performs surgery on inoperable brain tumors in kids dying of cancer, and then ships them off to the Burzynski clinic in Texas to get injected with urine and die.You’ve got to admit, marshaling the resources of a hospital, opening up a child’s skull, and diddling about with a knife inside without killing them is an amazing feat of impressive showmanship, sure to make devastated parents think something is being done worth $20-60,000 — even if there is no evidence at all that poking a glioblastoma with a pointy object offers any therapeutic benefit at all. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to learn that Teo is actually a very skilled surgeon. The problem is that brain surgery is not a panacea, and sometimes it is a totally inappropriate approach to deal with some cancers.

Or as Furious Purpose does here:

From reading the stories of those desperate parents of children with inoperable brain tumours, I must conclude that Dr Charles Teo may deliberately choose to operate on children with tumours he knows these kids will die of, because current medical science has no cure to offer them. He then removes the tumour or at least some of it for what is said to be between 20000.- and 60000.- dollars for the surgery at Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and the high dependency care required afterwards, and he then recommends to the parents for their child to have additional treatment with “antineoplastons” at the Burzynski clinic in Houston, Texas. Treatment that is not FDA-approved, that has not been shown in trials meeting current scientific standards to be effective, and that is given only in exchange for exorbitant sums of money, and may be refused if the money is not forthcoming.Charles Teo and Stanislaw Burzynski appear to be making money from the desperation of parents of dying children. Teo seems to be offering hope through surgery when there is none, and he then seems to be referring those same desperate folks for more false hope, and more expenses, to the Burzynski clinic in Houston.

Bullshit. Neither Furious Purpose nor PZ has anywhere near enough evidence to justify accusing Dr. Teo of something so vile and despicable.

It’s far more likely that Dr. Teo’s just an aggressive surgeon who thinks he’s doing his best for his patients by trying to remove tumors that other surgeons consider unresectable. Again, there’s a fine line between being surgically aggressive and surgically reckless, and there’s also insufficient evidence in the public record for me to judge whether Dr. Teo has crossed that line.

The second part of the accusation against Dr. Teo is a bit trickier. Is Dr. Teo funneling patients to Dr. Burzynski after having operated on them for in essence no reason? We only have two cases to go on, one of which doesn’t describe Dr. Teo as saying anything about the Burzynski Clinic or antineoplastons, the second of which quotes Dr. Teo as saying that he felt it would be a “good option” for his patient. Whether Dr. Teo suggested it or the patient’s parents latched on to the Burzynski Clinic and Dr. Teo gave his blessing is not known. From what we know, at best we can conclude that Dr. Teo’s grasp of science is not the greatest and that he’s prone to dubious science, as evidenced by his enthusiastic embrace of the “cell phones cause cancer” pseudoscience making the rounds. It’s quite possible that he’s similarly prone to being impressed by bad science and pseudoscience like that promoted by Dr. Burzynski. If that’s true, it’s bad. Very bad. However, it might not be true. We only have two cases that we know about over 8 or 9 years to go on, and Dr. Teo operates on hundreds of patients a year. These two cases could easily be outliers.

It’s clear that Dr. Teo is a controversial figure. He’s wrong on mobile phones and cancer. He also seems to have a bit more of the flamboyant showman in him than is good for a surgeon to have, a point that several of the stories I’ve cited make, and he definitely seems very cocky, perhaps more so than is necessary to be a neurosurgeon. (After all, it takes a certain amount of cockiness to have the confidence in yourself that you can crack open someone’s skull and remove part of his brain without leaving him permanently disabled.) It’s also pretty clear to me that Dr. Teo is the type of surgeon who pushes the envelope, perhaps bordering on recklessness at times. If that’s the case, he should be called out for subjecting patients to operations that can’t help them. However, I’m not convinced that that’s the case. In fact, it is not in the least bit clear to me that Dr. Teo is the sort who operates on patients whom he knows he can’t cure in order to make money, and I wish I didn’t have to point that out. When it comes to whether there’s any sort of relationship between Dr. Teo and Dr. Burzynski, I can only conclude that it’s possible–likely, even–that Dr. Teo is a bit too credulous about Burzynski’s results but that there is nowhere near enough evidence that I’ve been able to find to conclude that Dr. Teo and Dr. Burzynski have some sort of relationship in which Dr. Teo sends patients Dr. Burzynski’s way after operating on them. If there is such a relationship, then I would condemn Dr. Teo in the strongest possible terms–but I need a lot more convincing than either PZ or Furious Purpose has provided before I can come to a conclusion.

Steve Jobs Regretted Wasting Time on Alternative Medicine

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Posted 21 Oct 2011 — by James Street
Category Complementary and Alternative Medicine, experimental treatments, Nutrition and Cancer, Pancreatic

Steve Jobs Regretted Wasting Time on Alternative MedicineEveryone else wanted Steve Jobs to move quickly against his tumor. His friends wanted him to get an operation. His wife wanted him to get an operation. But the Apple CEO, so used to swimming against the tide of popular opinion, insisted on trying alternative therapies for nine crucial months. Before he died, Jobs resolved to let the world know he deeply regretted the critical decision, biographer Walter Isaacson has told 60 Minutes.

“We talked about this a lot,” Isaacson told 60 Minutes of Jobs’s decision to treat a neuroendocrine tumor in his pancreas with an alternative diet rather than medically recommended surgery. “He wanted to talk about it, how he regretted it….I think he felt he should have been operated on sooner… He said, ‘I didn’t want my body to be opened…I didn’t want to be violated in that way.’”

The account lends credence to a Harvard cancer researcher we quoted in a controversial post last week.

Ramzi Amri, a Fullbright scholar researching neuroendocrine tumors at the Harvard Medical School and at Massachusetts General Hospital, said the tumors of the subtype Jobs is believed to have contracted are “relatively mild” and very survivable if detected early. But Jobs delayed surgery for at least nine months, making it “sound to assume that Mr. Jobs’ choice for alternative medicine has eventually led to an unnecessarily early death.”

Says Isaacson:

He’s regretful about it… Soon everybody is telling him, ‘Don’t try and treat it with these roots and vegetables and these kinds of things…’ By the time they operate on him they notice it has spread to the tissues around the pancreas.

To understand Jobs’s prognosis, it is necessary to appreciate the precise type of cancer he had, and the subtype he is believed to have had. First, Jobs’s neuroendocrine tumor, also called an islet cell tumor, put him outside the 95 percent of pancreatic cancer victims who have highly fatal adenocarcinoma.

Second, Jobs is believed to have contracted one of the more survivable neuroendocrine tumors. It had several characters weighing the initial prognosis favorably, had Jobs acted as doctors recommended:

  • It was apparently functional, meaning it produced hormones, hence the “hormone imbalance” that Apple eventually acknowledged. These sorts of tumors are more “differentiated” from other cells and are thus considered less progressed and easier to treat.
  • Jobs’s tumor did not initially appear to have metastasized, as there were no outward signs of chemotherapy, though after being left untreated it did become metastatic and spread to his liver.
  • The tumor was in Jobs’s pancreas, among the more survivable locations a neuroendocrine tumor can appear.
  • Insulinoma, the type of tumor Jobs was most often reported and speculated to have had is also among the more survivable types.

The five-year survival rates on this chart give a good indication of the prognosis for insulinoma (88.7 percent) and tumors located in the pancreas (78.1). It also shows how much less survivable metastasic and non-function tumors—of the type Jobs is believed NOT to have had, at diagnosis—can be.

If you want more details, we’ve included some notes Amri sent us by email below. But suffice it to say, Jobs’s instinct for defiant iconoclasm and his insistence on unconventional approaches did not, in the end, serve him as well as it served Apple’s customers and shareholders. And it seems clear Jobs knew this, and wanted the rest of us to know it, too.


 


Additional Medical Details

Here’s how Amri explained things when we asked him on email about a particular type of neuroendocrine tumor with a lower survival rate (“non-functioning metastatic islet cell tumors,” whose survival rate is only around five years):

That number could very well be true, but there are two reasons it doesn’t apply to Jobs (and again, we’re on the border of speculation but it’s based on hard number and what Jobs said):

The metastatic part: Metastasis means the tumor spread outside its original site. His tumor probably wasn’t metastatic until when Jobs spoke of that “hormonal imbalance”, I believe in ’08 (source is easy to google). That was also the reason for his liver transplant: his liver was probably invaded by metastatic disease. If he had mets before, he certainly didn’t treat them as we’d have seen the obvious signs of chemotherapy appear.

The nonfunctional part, nonfunctional in those tumors means the cells degenerated to the point that they cannot carry out their original function, in this case, as I said in my first point, Jobs spoke about a “hormonal imbalance” when the disease recurred somewhere as late as ’08/’09. This means the tumor was -even then- clearly still producing hormones, proving it was a functional one, which is far less deadly than the nonfunctional ones.

This so-called called loss of differentiation is actually a strong predictor of how bad the tumor is in many cancers. The less differentiated it is, the more reckless it will be in its growth pattern and its tendency to spread.

For instance, in my colon cancer patients, they’re about 8 times as likely to develop or already have metastasis if their tumor is poorly differentiated as compared to well or even moderately differentiated tumor.

The subtype: so Jobs didn’t have a nonfunctioning one, but from what I read (please google to double-check) he even had an insulinoma, which is actually the most common and best treatable type.

He also had it in the pancreas, which is known to have one of the best prognosis averages.

Combine the two in this table comparing the different kinds of neuroendocrine tumors, add up the extraordinary level of care a man like Jobs can access and afford and you can see what I mean about his considerable chance of cure, hope it helps.

Amri also fielded questions (in italics) about this Slate piece:

1. “Islet-cell cancer, like Jobs and I had, is usually curable when
caught early” – this seems to fit with what you wrote. Is “curable”
the right word, i.e. it’s gone and you don’t die from it?

1 – Absolutely. If you’re on time, you can resect the tumor (depending on the site) without even needing to remove the pancreas or any other organ.

And since you’re early, the chances of it coming back as a recurrence from the original tumor are small.

There could always be an independent recurrence, if you have a familial disease that makes you at risk of developing these nasties (google MEN-1 for the most common example) but there’s no indication this was the case for Jobs and -one again- seen the level of care he can afford, I’m pretty sure that has been checked on him. It you do not have a familial disease, it’s like lightning striking twice at the same place. It happens, but with these tumors, that’s really, really unusual.

2. “After I was diagnosed, I was told that modern medicine doesn’t
have chemotherapy or radiation to use against islet cells. (“We’ve got
nothing that works” went the refrain.) ” I noticed in your piece you
mentioned Jobs seemed to eschew chemo; would he have had a choice?

2 – I think that was specific to his own case and his own subtype of islet-cell tumor.

In general, and especially if Jobs had a well-differentiated insulinoma, there are many treatment options, but when you’re early and the tumor is small enough, surgery is by far the best, in most cases you take the tumor out locally, check the local lymph nodes and if there is no spread in the nodes, you can confidently release the patient without any lasting side-effects, a low risk of recurrence and only a checkup consisting of a scan an labs every year or so as long as symptoms don’t come back.

- Chemo doesn’t always work and works in only about 10-20% of cases if the tumor is in the intestines or the stomach, but if it’s in the pancreas, some agents have been FDA approved and can help much more often.

Also, these numbers might appear worse than they really are because only the worst cases actually get chemo because most won’t need it at all. If you treat only the bottom, the average success will of course be low.

- There’s also radiotherapy with special isotopes that will be absorbed by the endocrine tumor cells that helps a lot if the tumor is metastatic.

- If that doesn’t help there’s the option of partial resection of the liver instead of removing the whole thing. The liver has the amazing faculty to partially regrow so a lot of the liver can be resected before the patient actually has a problem. This option is only available to those cases where the tumor is confined to either the right or left lobe, or in milder cases, only one of its eight so called Couinaud Segments.

All of that is usually tried before one refers to a liver transplant. If only because livers are very scarce organs and transplants to cancer patients are not always a good idea because of the immune-system suppressing drugs used to prevent rejection. They also partly suppress the body’s own immune reaction to any cancer growths, making the cancer more prone to spread.

Harvard Cancer Expert: Steve Jobs Probably Doomed Himself With Alternative Medicine

Steve Jobs had a mild form of cancer that is not usually fatal, but seems to have ushered along his own death by delaying conventional treatment in favor of alternative remedies, a Harvard Medical School researcher and faculty member says. Jobs’s intractability, so often his greatest asset, may have been his undoing.

“Let me cut to the chase: Mr. Jobs allegedly chose to undergo all sorts of alternative treatment options before opting for conventional medicine,” Ramzi Amri wrote in an extraordinarily detailed post to Quora, an online Q&A forum popular among Silicon Valley executives. “Given the circumstances, it seems sound to assume that Mr. Jobs’ choice for alternative medicine has eventually led to an unnecessarily early death.”

Amri went on to say that, even after entering conventional medical care, the Apple CEO seemed to eschew the most practical forms of treatment. Addressing the period when Jobs began to visibly shed weight, Amri wrote, “it seems that even during this recurrent phase, Mr. Jobs opted to dedicate his time to Apple as the disease progressed, instead of opting for chemotherapy or any other conventional treatment.”

When we contacted Amri at his Harvard Medical School email address to verify the post was his—he’s a researcher in the department of surgery at the medical school and research fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital—Amri emphasized, “I wrote that on a PERSONAL title and it’s my PERSONAL opinion.” On Quora, Amri expressed his “profoundest respect” for Jobs and that “I do not pretend to know anything about the case on a personal level and I never participated in the care of Mr. Jobs. I base all my cancer figures on my own research or sources from biomedical research known to me… I have done 1.5 years of research on the type of tumor that affected Steve Jobs and have some strong opinions on his case.”

According to a 2008 Fortune article, Jobs for nine months pursued “alternative methods to treat his pancreatic cancer, hoping to avoid [an] operation through a special diet.” The Buddhist vegetarian took this approach from the time he was diagnosed in October 2003 until at least the end of July 2004, when he underwent surgery at Stanford University Medical Center.

Harvard Cancer Expert: Steve Jobs Probably Doomed Himself With Alternative MedicineBy then the cancer was so far along Jobs had to lose his pancreas and duodenum in a “Whipple procedure.” The cancer also spread to all the major parts of his liver. “The only reason he’d have a transplant,” wrote Amri, “would be that the tumor invaded all major parts of the liver, which takes a considerable amount of time.” Amri said the Whipple procedure and liver transplant were clear signs the cancer was out of control and should have been stopped earlier.

The condition might have been nipped in the bud if Jobs had acted right away. Jobs’s cancer manifest in neuroendocrine tumors, which are typically far less lethal than the “pancreatic adenocarcinoma” that make up 95 percent of pancreatic cancer cases. Amrit said neuroendocrine tumors are so “mild” that…

“In my series of patients, for many subtypes, the survival rate was as high as 100% over a decade… As many as 10% of autopsied persons in the general population have been reported to have one of these without ever having had any symptoms during their life. Up to 30% of detected GEP-NETs are so well differentiated they’re strictly not cancers.”

But even “the most innocent cancer” needs to be removed quickly, which is why older men are always being lectured about colon cancer screenings; colon cancer tumors are thought to begin as removable polyps. In Jobs’s case, surgical removal may well have saved him if performed early enough, Amrit implies. He wrote:

“In many cases, a simple enucleation (just cutting out the tumor with a safe margin around it) is enough and leaves no residual side-effects.”

The cancer researcher made his comments about Jobs because he was looking for a lesson in his case. Doctors routinely face the ethical conundrum of being unable to treat patients because they’ve exercised their freedom to reject sound medical science.

But there is also, thankfully, a much clearer and easier lesson for patients in Jobs’s experience: Do not waste time. Don’t waste time by ignoring advice to get screened; don’t waste time by drowning yourself in research about your condition; and don’t waste time by delaying medically recommended treatment in the hops that something else will work.

Harvard Cancer Expert: Steve Jobs Probably Doomed Himself With Alternative Medicine“We saw the tumor slowly draining the life out him,” Amrit wrote of Jobs. “It was a horrible thing to see him lose weight and slowly turn into a skin and bones form of himself.”

That, in the end, may prove the most compelling reason to forgive the brilliant CEO his many faults: Of all the people who suffered on the dark side of his headstrong, iconoclastic decisionmaking, it was Jobs himself who appears to have paid the biggest price.

A Tragic Decision That May Have Cost Steve Jobs His Life?

Posted By Dr. Mercola | October 09 2011 | 15,698 views

What Did Steve Jobs Die From?

Pancreatic cancer is one of the faster spreading cancers; only about 4 percent of patients can expect to survive five years after their diagnosis. Each year, about 44,000 new cases are diagnosed in the U.S., and 37,000 people die of the disease. Although cancer of the pancreas has a terrible prognosis–half of all patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer die within 10 months of the diagnosis; half of those in whom it has metastasized die within six months–cancer in the pancreas is not necessarily a death sentence.

The pancreas contains two types of glands: exocrine glands that produce enzymes that break down fats and proteins, and endocrine glands that make hormones like insulin that regulate sugar in the blood. Jobs died of tumors originating in the endocrine glands, which are among the rarer forms of pancreatic cancer. Unlike pancreatic cancer, with neuroendocrine cancer, if you catch it early, there is a real potential for cure. His cancer was detected during an abdominal scan in October 2003, as Fortune magazine reported in a 2008 cover story.

It is widely believed in conventional medicine that surgery can lead to long-term survival.  Despite the expert consensus on the value of surgery, Jobs did not elect it right away. He reportedly spent nine months on “alternative therapies,” including what Fortune called “a special diet.”

But when a scan showed that the original tumor had grown, he finally had it removed on July 31, 2004, at Stanford University Medical Clinic. He underwent an operation called a modified Whipple procedure, or a pancreatoduodenectomy, which removes the right side of the pancreas, the gallbladder, and parts of the stomach, bile duct, and small intestine, which was a strong suggestion that his cancer had spread beyond the pancreas.

Within five years, it was clear that Jobs was not cured. In April of 2004 Jobs flew to Switzerland and underwent an experimental procedure called peptide receptor radionuclide therapy (PRRT). It involves delivering radiation to tumor cells by attaching one of two radioactive isotopes to a drug that mimics somatostatin, the hormone that regulates the entire endocrine system and the secretion of other hormones.

This treatment apparently failed, as shortly after that he had a liver transplant at Methodist University Hospital in Memphis.  This is likely because the cancer had spread from the pancreas to his liver. Liver transplants are a well-established treatment for tumors that originate in that organ BUT it is very uncommon to remove the liver for metastatic cancer.

This is not routinely done for two primary reasons. The first is that it in no way, shape, or form addresses the original cancer, and it can easily spread to the new liver. But more importantly, he had to be placed on large doses of drugs to suppress his immune system so he would not reject his new liver. Tragically this is the very system your body uses to help control cancers.  The liver has enormous regenerative capacity, and if they only removed the portion of his liver that contained the malignant cells, he would not have to take those dangerous anti-rejection drugs.

Conventional cancer experts disagree with the approach that was taken for Steve.

 ” In contrast, with a liver transplant “the overall costs and complications … override its benefits, especially when compared with partial [removal of the liver].” Indeed, liver transplants for metastatic cancer “have been largely abandoned,” says Columbia’s Chabot, because the immune-suppressing, anti-rejection drugs “lead to such a high recurrence rate.

Interestingly, it appears Steve was not given any chemotherapy or radiation treatments after his liver transplant, which undoubtedly contributed to his living over seven years after his surgery.

Was there Another Option for Steve’s Cancer?

I am certainly not an expert in the treatment of cancer but it seems that Steve got the best cancer care possible. He avoided all treatments for nine months before electing to have a surgical intervention that frequently is curative for this type of cancer. It appears he also was able to avoid chemotherapy and radiation. Of course, the question remains on how he got the original cancer. It is impossible to know for sure as there are so many variables.

However, the biggest issue may have been the decision to have a liver transplant and go on the anti-rejection drugs. Conventional oncologists are stating that was, perhaps, a mistake.

I thought it would be helpful to interview an expert in the natural treatment of cancer on this so I contacted Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez, who is widely known for his work with pancreatic cancer. I previously interviewed Dr. Gonzalez about his remarkable cancer program, in which he discussed the details of his history and the therapeutic approaches he employs-with a rate of success that is entirely unheard of in conventional medicine, I might add.

As explained in our first interview, Dr. Gonzalez has been involved in the natural treatment of cancer for over 25 years, and offers really innovative therapies for this devastating disease. He’s known internationally for his expertise on pancreatic cancer specifically, but his therapies have wider applications and can be applied to all forms of cancer.

Many of his pancreatic cancer patients are still alive and well today, having survived up to 20 years… In conventional medicine, this is simply unheard of. Using the best conventional therapies we have, the typical survival rate for a pancreatic cancer patient is about 12-18 months.

To summarize Dr. Gonzalez’ program, it consists of three basic components:

  1. Individualized diet based on nutritional (metabolic) typing
  2. Individualized supplement program, which includes vitamins, minerals, trace elements, and pancreatic enzymes
  3. Detoxification, which includes coffee enemas and colon cleanses

To review the details of his program, please see our previous interview.

Steve Jobs, Another Victim of Pancreatic Cancer

There are two basic types of pancreatic cancer. The most aggressive form is adenocarcinoma, which develops in the cells that produce pancreatic enzymes (these enzymes help digest proteins, fats, and carbohydrates and eliminate toxins from your body).

“About 95 percent of pancreatic cancers develop in the enzyme-producing cells that synthesize the main digestive enzymes of the intestinal tract,” Dr. Gonzalez explains. “About five percent are developed in the endocrine component of the pancreas. The pancreas not only produces enzymes, but also produces hormones like insulin and glucagon. Cancer can develop in the insulin or other hormone-producing cells, but it’s much less common. They tend to be a little less aggressive – the average survival for carcinoma of the enzyme-producing cells is probably three to six months.”

Steve Jobs had this latter version of pancreatic cancer; islet cell carcinoma, the technical term for cancer of the hormone producing cells of the pancreas.

“He didn’t have the most aggressive form,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “… [H]e’s had it for many years. He had a liver transplant in Memphis about two years ago. Again, he was very secretive about what was going on… [I]t must have meant he had a metastasis in the liver. First, he had to be treated with immunosuppressants. Whenever you have a transplanted organ, your body will tend to reject it, so you have to suppress your immune system. That’s not good when you have a history of cancer, because immunosuppression can stimulate cancer growth since you’re suppressing your own immune ability to fight cancer.”

It appears Steve Jobs did everything he could, conventionally and alternatively to stay alive. As Dr. Gonzalez states, money certainly wasn’t a limiting factor in his treatment.

“A procedure like that can run several hundred thousand dollars, at least. So my assumption, having treated pancreatic cancer for over two decades, he probably had metastasis in the liver, and it was a somewhat desperate attempt to try to keep it under control, although it would be ultimately futile. There’s always the possibility of some kind of liver failure for reasons other than cancer that might have led him to a liver transplant, such as a medication reaction, hepatitis C from transfusion or something. But again, the reasons have never been publicly released, so we don’t know. But most likely, he had metastasis in the liver.”

Many Cancer Patients Shun Natural Cancer Treatment Options

According to Dr. Gonzalez, Jobs was seeing an acupuncturist who was very anxious for him to contact Dr. Gonzalez for advice. Dr. Gonzalez has been successfully treating cancer patients for over two decades.

“One of my great patients is a fellow from Michigan who had islet cell carcinoma that, at the time of diagnosis in 1995, had already metastasized to his liver. He went to the Mayo clinic, where everything was confirmed; he had CAT scans and biopsies… To the Mayo clinic’s credit… if they know that a therapy isn’t going to be useful, they don’t promote it, whereas a lot of oncologists will promote therapies that are worthless.

The Mayo clinic told him chemo wouldn’t do anything for him… There was really nothing they could do. He started with me in 1995, shortly after his diagnosis. He’s alive and well now, 16 years later. CAT scans beginning around 2000 showed total resolution of his big tumors. He had a huge tumor in the pancreas — it must have been around 6 centimeters. And then he had a big tumor, right under the liver. All these are gone.”

Celebrity Patients and ‘Star’ Oncologists

Jobs is not the only celebrity who did everything he could through the conventional paradigm, which tragically has an abysmal success rate.

“Michael Landon actually did consult with me,” Dr. Gonzalez says, “but he never did the therapy. His press agent, Harry Flynn, became a very good friend. Harry and I remain friends to this day, and this goes back to 20 years ago. As soon as a successful celebrity gets cancer, the conventional predators come out of the woodwork-and they say that alternative doctors are sitting there like predators, trying to lure unsuspecting cancer patients into their lairs. You know, I’ve been in the alternative world for a long time, and I’ve come out of this very conventional research. But I don’t see a whole of that in the alternative world.

What I do see is conventional doctors doing exactly what they criticize in alternative doctors. Landon was treated by an “eminent oncologist” from Cedars-Sinai, who held a press conference. The first thing conventional doctors do when they get a celebrity is to hold a press conference. To me it’s almost like narcissism, just to show how important they are with all these celebrities coming to them. This is even if they know they can’t do anything. He gave Landon an experimental chemo, but he was dead in three months.”

As Dr. Gonzalez points out, conventional doctors can fail miserably and still be considered heroes. Alternative doctors, even the most successful ones, are still looked upon with great suspicion if not disdain. Upon Landon’s death, his oncologist held another press conference, and Landon’s widow was impressed with how “hard” his doctor had worked to treat her dying husband.

“You see, when a conventional oncologist loses a celebrity patient, they portray him as a hero fighting this terrible disease against the enormous odds; working late into the night trying to keep the celebrity alive,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “But when an alternative practitioner loses a patient, they consider him a sleazy quack getting money from unsuspecting cancer victims.

… The same thing was true, more recently, with Patrick Swayze. He had a very aggressive pancreatic cancer. Stanford oncologists doing his treatment held press conferences routinely… filled with this kind of joyful optimism that “they’re going to help.” He was gone in 18 months. Friends of his are actually patients of mine, but he absolutely had no interest in alternative medicine. He was very conventional – used “the best doctors” from Stanford.”

Misplaced Blame-The Case of Steve McQueen and Dr. Kelley

Dr. Gonzalez’ mentor, Dr. Kelley (who developed the cancer program Dr. Gonzalez now uses), treated Steve McQueen. McQueen ultimately died, although he lasted almost a year under Dr. Kelley’s care.

“He was terminal when he came to Dr. Kelley,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “He had failed radiation, failed immunotherapy. He had been misdiagnosed for a year. The reason he ended up with Stage 4 mesothelioma is because he was misdiagnosed by his fancy conventional doctors in Southern California.

Then they gave him radiation – there’s not a study in the history of the world showing that radiation helps in mesothelioma; they gave it anyway. Then they gave him immunotherapy. There’s not a study in the history of the world saying that immunotherapy helps in mesothelioma. They did it anyway. Then he was dying and he went to see Kelley. He died, and Kelley got all the blame-not the doctors who misdiagnosed him! In fact when you read the newspaper articles, there are still articles about how Dr. Kelley killed McQueen.

No, cancer killed McQueen.

You see, an oncologist at Sloan-Kettering can do a bone marrow transplant on celebrity patients. They die, and he’s written up like a hero… Kelley tries to help after conventional doctors failed miserably and misdiagnosed him, and McQueen lived longer than he should. (He was a half-compliant patient – he continued to smoke, drink, and eat ice cream.) I told Kelley when I first met him, “The biggest mistake you’ve made with McQueen is you took him as a patient. You should have told him to hit the trail.”

Dr. Kelley is now dead. But 30 years later, he still gets blamed for McQueen’s death. About two or three years ago, there was an Op-Ed piece in the Wall Street Journal attacking unconventional cancer therapy. They talked about McQueen, and how Kelley killed him. … Conventional oncologists lose patients every day, and no one says they’re murdering anybody. Instead they’re considered heroes for trying so hard.”

As Dr. Gonzalez says, it’s not even a double standard; it’s like being in an alternative Universe. If you’re a conventional oncologist, you can do no wrong, you’re lauded as a hero despite your failures, and you make a lot of money making them. Meanwhile, alternative practitioners may succeed again and again, and still be considered dangerous quacks. This is a mindset that has absolutely nothing to do with scientific validity, objectivity, or evaluation of data. It really falls into a category more reminiscent of religious fervor.

Conventional Medicine as a Religion

So, how did we get to this point? Why does this situation exist when it’s so illogical?

“Conventional academic medicine is the last religion left in America,” Dr. Gonzalez says.

“So the way you have to look at medicine is not as a scientific profession, but rather a religious profession… It has its irrational beliefs. It has its own special language. It has its tools, it has its rituals. … The fact that they don’t make us better is ignored. Landon died, Patrick Swayze died, Linda McCartney died; I could list 20 celebrities who are dead because they went the conventional route. Why didn’t they do my therapy?

Because I don’t have a temple. I don’t even own a white coat… Michael Landon picked that up right away. In fact, his press agent, Harry Flynn, wanted him to come and see me… [But] one of Landon’s comments about me was that I “wasn’t fancy enough.” So he went to the priesthood. He went to Cedars-Sinai.”

Meanwhile, Dr. Gonzalez has patients who were diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at the same time as Michael Landon, who are still alive today. His oldest survivor began the program in 1988.

We have multiple patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer who have done well,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “It’s interesting: I do have very world-renowned celebrities as patients. But no one knows who they are; no one knows they have cancer. The reason for that is because they didn’t die, and we don’t hold press conferences. They’re doing their program and doing well with their lives.

We tell our patients: don’t make cancer your life. Move on with your life. So they’re back acting in movies, doing talk shows and that kind of stuff. No one knows they even had cancer. And that’s fine with me. Some of them keep it secret because of the career thing, and they don’t want the publicity. I understand that. So my successful patients who are celebrities, nobody knows who they are because they got well and they’re just doing their job.”

Now, it’s important to stress that this is not a conspiracy.

The physicians who promote the conventional approach do so because they truly believe it’s the right thing to do; the only thing that has any chance of working. Healing cancer with foods and coffee enemas seems ludicrous when compared to the most advanced drug cocktails. If the most potent toxins can’t kill the cancer, how in the world could you get rid of the cancer with nutrients? They’ve bought the conventional paradigm hook line and sinker, and they promote it not just for their patients, but for themselves and their families as well. And they suffer the same consequences as their patients.

“They grow up with the bias that drugs are the way to go. It’s how they’re trained; it’s imprinted in their brain in medical school. It’s like mind control – it’s what they believe. They just can’t believe anything else. They go to their graves believing it – often to their discredit, unfortunately.

Many conventional physicians are also in just as poor a health as their patients. However, there are signs that the tide is slowly about to shift.

We get calls from doctors now, asking us about nutrition and what supplements they should take,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “There’s been a big change in the last few years. Fifteen years ago it didn’t happen, and now it’s starting to happen.”

For More Information

For more information about Dr. Gonzalez and his practice, see www.dr-gonzalez.com.

He’s also working on a series of books, two of which have already been published and received five-star reviews: The Trophoblast and the Origins of Cancer, and One Man Alone: An Investigation of Nutrition, Cancer, and William Donald Kelley. Three others are in the works, one of which will contain 100 of Dr. Gonzalez’ case reports of patients with advanced cancer who successfully recovered on his program.

Thankfully, Dr. Gonzalez is still on the front lines and actively engaged in helping people by coaching them with natural alternatives instead of toxic drugs and radiation. I would personally not hesitate to recommend him to a family member or a friend diagnosed with cancer. His office is in Manhattan, where he can be reached at (212) 213-3337. His website, www.dr-gonzalez.com also contains information on how to become a patient, and everything a potential patient needs to know.

Another source for more information about alternative cancer treatments in general is Suzanne Somers’ book, Knockout. She reviews Dr. Gonzalez’ work in one chapter, and Dr. Gonzalez personally recommends the book as a well-researched resource for anyone interested in getting more information.

“For cancer, specifically, I think Suzanne did a good job,” Dr. Gonzalez says. “She really worked hard to put together resources that she thought legitimate and would be helpful for patients… So that’s a good place to start in terms of general recommendations.”

Steve Jobs dead at 56, his life ended prematurely by chemotherapy and radiotherapy for cancer

Note: This article expresses the opinion of Natural News Editor Mike Adams and not necessarily the opinion of this website.

Thursday, October 06, 2011
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com

(NaturalNews) It is extremely saddening to see the cost in human lives that modern society pays for its false belief in conventional medicine and the cancer industry in particular. Visionary Steve Jobs died today, just months after being treated for cancer with chemotherapy at the Stanford Cancer Center in Palo Alto, California. In recent months, he appeared in public photos as a frail shadow of his former self. The thin legs, sunken cheek bones and loss of body weight are all classic signs of total body toxicity observed in chemotherapy and radiotherapy patients.

Steve Jobs reportedly underwent both. His chemotherapy treatments at the Standard Cancer Center are now well known (http://www.marksmarketanalysis.com/…), and his secret radiotherapy treatments in Switzerland have now been made public by former Apple executive Jerry York.

Jerry York confided in Fortune Magazine about Steve Jobs’ secret flight to Switzerland to receive radiotherapy treatment for his cancer (http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2011/01…). Fortune Magazine kept this secret until Jerry York died in March of 2010 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerry_…)), after which Fortune Magazine decided its confidentiality agreement with York no longer applied, and it published details about Jobs’ secret visits to Switzerland (http://gawker.com/5737092/steve-job…).

Fortune Magazine also repeats another fact about Steve Jobs that rarely appears in the press: Namely, that Steve Jobs underwent a secret liver transplant which raised eyebrows among many who wondered why a member of the wealthy business elite could receive a liver transplant essentially on demand while everybody else had to wait on a long transplant list (http://articles.cnn.com/2009-06-24/…).

In January of this year, Roc4Life.com reported:

“Jobs’ medical leave is due to cancer, but no one knows whether it stems from his 2004 battle with pancreatic cancer or complications from a secret liver transplant in 2009. According to recently deceased off-the-record source from Apple’s Jerry York, Jobs took an unpublicized flight to Switzerland in 2009 to undergo unusual treatment at the University of Basel. Switzerland’s University of Basel known for their radiotherapy treatments for neuroendocrine cancer and it’s unavailability in the U.S. Experts say Jobs’ pancreatic cancer has a history of reappearing and spreading to vital organs at a slow-growing pace, which probably explains the medical leave.”

In other words, there is no question that Steve Jobs underwent multiple conventional cancer treatments, including surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

In the end, however, even Steve Jobs could not overturn the laws of biochemistry. When you poison the human body, the result is the deterioration and eventual shut down of the body. Chemotherapy does not work! This fact should now be obvious, and yet every year, more and more people choose chemotherapy to their own demise — people like Farrah Fawcett, Peter Jennings, Patrick Swayze, Michael Douglas and many others (http://www.naturalnews.com/027047_c…).

Don’t they see that conventional cancer treatments do not work?

Losing Steve Jobs is a loss of a great visionary

It is striking that people who are geniuses in their own fields can understand so little about the fundamentals of human health. Steve Jobs was arguably one of the most influential visionaries of our time, and his development of human-technology interfaces revolutionized modern computing. Had he achieved another twenty years of life — and lived to 75 — he would have no doubt contributed to our world in even more profound and positive ways.

Yet his remaining life was stolen from him by the cancer industry and its poisons. This is yet another frustrating example of how the modern medical system harms our society. It steals from us the longevity of visionary individuals who have so much more to offer our world in terms of creativity and innovation.

Of course, you can’t blame the cancer industry for causing Jobs’ cancer in the first place. Some other cause had to have been present to get the cancer growing — probably a combination of nutritional deficiencies and exposure to environmental toxins. And yet the cancer establishment says nothing to people about correcting obvious nutritional deficiencies that lead to cancer, even when most cancers can be prevented for mere pennies a day.

The simple combination of vitamin D and selenium, if taken in combination, could probably prevent more than 80% of all cancers in America (http://www.naturalnews.com/021892.html). Yet the American Cancer Society and all the mainstream cancer non-profits don’t dare advocate vitamin D or selenium. If solutions were readily available to everyone, how would the cancer industry maintain its profitability?

The dark side of Apple

This gets us to the dark side of Apple, because just as the cancer industry is a greed-driven monstrosity that incessantly seeks profits at the expense of others, Apple has increasingly become a corporation that has routinely chosen for-profit domination over public service. This is not so much about Steve Jobs himself as it is about those who surrounded him and ultimately exploited his talents for their own selfish agendas.

Apple iPhones, for example, were recently exposed as secret tracking devices that record your location and upload that data back to Apple headquarters (http://www.naturalnews.com/032239_i…).

By any honest account, Apple operates today with a mindset of total monopolistic domination, requiring apps to be sold through its iTunes, where Apple takes an unfair cut of every sale. In fact, Apple has come to very much resemble the Orwellian Big Brother image that once made it famous in its January 22, 1984 Superbowl ad, which positioned Apple’s Macintosh computer as freeing people from tyranny. Watch that ad at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhsW…

What’s so striking about this commercial is that, in many ways, Apple has become the very thing it once claimed to oppose — domineering control, automaton conformity, and centralized command over the expression of musicians and programmers alike. The text of the ad says, “On January 24th, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh. And you’ll see why 1984 won’t be like “1984.”

Thanks to companies like Apple, 2011 sure is a lot like 1984. A clever response to all this appears in a parody video that pits Steve Jobs in that “1984″ video as a way to show that Apple acts more like Big Brother with each passing day: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zhH…

Anyone who has ever owned an iPhone knows all about being locked into a technology from which there is no free choice to do what you want with it. Why aren’t iPhones sold as “unlocked” from the get-go? Why do you have to hack your own phone just to free it from Apple’s domineering control? And why does your phone track your every move even without your permission or knowledge?

In fairness, this is almost certainly due to the greedy business types who surrounded Steve Jobs, and not Jobs himself. Jobs always seemed to be more of a humanitarian, but his concepts for innovation inevitably got swept up into the circus of profit.

Live by principle, because that’s the only thing you take with you

The more you look into the story of Steve Jobs and Apple, the deeper it all gets. And that brings us back to Steve Jobs and the topic of principles and ethics. All the wealth in the world couldn’t save Steve Jobs from cancer, of course.

Here’s a question for you: In his final days of life, would Steve Jobs have traded every bit of wealth he owned for a healthy new liver and pancreas? You bet he would! And yet he couldn’t. Because it doesn’t work that way. When it comes to organ health, there are no second chances. You’re given one set of organs to live with, and if you can’t figure out how to take care of those with nutrition, healthy foods and avoidance of environmental toxins, all the money in the world can’t save you.

Importantly, you don’t take money with you when you die, so collecting dollars or cars or even gold is little more than a short-term distraction set in the physical world. What you do take is a karmic record of your actions; a “universal log file” of your principles and ethics, if you will. And that’s what matters in whatever experience or reality awaits us beyond this one, whether you believe in Heaven, or reincarnation, or ascension to higher plane of existence.

Was Steve Jobs a positive influence on our world? Yes, I think so

I don’t pretend to be qualified to judge Steve Jobs on all his actions here on our planet, but the only honest question in helping to answer that is this: “Is our world better off because of Steve Jobs’ influence? Or is it worse off?”

On the whole, I believe Steve Jobs himself was a creative visionary whose talents eventually became co-opted by less-than-ethical corporate interests which operated outside his core intentions. This is precisely the reason why brilliant people should always be wary of “investors” or men wearing suits, because the whole purpose of venture capital is to grant people who don’t know how to really create wealth a way to sink their claws into those who do.

This is why I have consistently and successfully resisted all venture capital and buyout attempts targeting NaturalNews. To bring in big money people would destroy the heart and soul of what NaturalNews is all about, in the same way that all the big money people who eventually surrounded Steve Jobs ultimately compromised what was originally an uplifting vision for human freedom and expression.

(Even in the health industry, I can’t even tell you all the stories of brilliant, visionary people who have been betrayed by investors and corporate interests. It happens almost 100% of the time.)

The real lesson in Steve Jobs’ passing, then, is not “oh wow look at all these cool gadgets he left us” — because that’s the juvenile view — but rather “what can we learn from Steve Jobs about staying authentic in our own lives and our own decisions?”

What I’ve learned from Steve Jobs is that staying true to your vision is far more important than being commercially successful or collecting material wealth. Walking a path that gets your face on the cover of business magazines requires too much compromise of ethics and principles. The business community, after all, doesn’t usually celebrate real geniuses who share things with the world and make nothing from it. It only celebrates those who find clever ways to extract billions of dollars from the hands of consumers.

In fact, you might even say that the business world actually punishes those who bring real innovation to the world — people such as free energy inventors, most of which you have never heard about because they ended up mysteriously dead before they could bring their inventions to market. Steve Jobs was celebrated because his innovations were consistent with the culture of mass consumerism and unbridled corporate greed — buy more computing stuff, and buy it often! That makes investors rich, and that’s the name of the game in the business world.

Steve Jobs was celebrated, in other words, not for who he was on the inside, but for all the other people who got rich off him along the way. And that’s a shame, because even after his passing, I feel like we never knew the real Steve Jobs at all — the Steve Jobs who probably wanted to make the world a better place yet repeatedly found his talents being distorted and leveraged for bottom-line profits in a culture of greed that only cares about finding new ways to convince consumers to part with their money.

Steve Jobs may be dead, but the domineering greed of those who extorted his talent lives on. The iPhone 5 will probably be out in a year or so, so we can all throw away our old electronics which end up in a toxic landfill somewhere, and then replace it with new electronics made in a slave labor factory in China. Isn’t technology great?

Either way, may Steve Jobs rest in peace. May his name never be used for commercial exploitation again.

‘Trojan horse’ bacteria delivering tumor-killing blow comes from the soil

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Posted 04 Sep 2011 — by James Street
Category Bacteria, Clinical Trials, Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Drugs, experimental treatments, Hypoxia

Posted Sun, 04 Sep 2011 23:01:00 GMT by

Cancerous tumors may just have met their nemesis, according to scientists speaking at the autumn conference of the Society for General Microbiology, which kicks off the UK tomorrow. But the fatal blow being delivered to dangerous tumors comes from an unlikely source – soil-dwelling bacteria, that have a special attraction for conditions found at a tumor’s heart. This new therapy - the result of collaboration between the UK-based University of Nottingham, and University of Maastricht, in Holland – should enter clinical trials within 2 years.

The bacterium being harnessed is widespread, harmless and has been on the planet for billions of years. Team leader, Professor Nigel Minton, described them: “Clostridia are an ancient group of bacteria that evolved on the planet before it had an oxygen-rich atmosphere and so they thrive in low oxygen conditions. When Clostridia spores are injected into a cancer patient, they will only grow in oxygen-depleted environments, i.e. the center of solid tumors.” This makes them ideal ‘trojan horse’ candidates for targeting tumors.

“This is a totally natural phenomenon, which requires no fundamental alterations and is exquisitely specific. We can exploit this specificity to kill tumor cells but leave healthy tissue unscathed,” said Professor Minton.  The trick to turning this selectivity into a tumor-killing therapy lies with giving the bacteria a weapon of attack. That comes from the insertion of an enzyme-producing gene into the Clostridia’s DNA. It is tuned-in to unlock a cancer-destroying ‘pro-drug’.

The pro-drug is separately administered, and remains harmless until the enzyme and pro-drug are combined. When this happens, the enzyme activates the drug, which takes on its destructive form – killing the cells around it. As only the cancerous cells have the Clostridia bacteria present, this is an elegant solution for removing tumors.

No need for the scalpel?

The approach is one that others have sought to make work, but the difficulty has been getting the bacteria to produce the right enzyme in the needed quantities. The team presenting their paper at this week’s conference feel that they have cracked this. Their bacterial strain has a gene that produces the enzyme more efficiently, and in larger amounts, than has previously been achieved.

The clinical trials are likely to be scheduled in the next 18 months. “We anticipate that the strain we have developed will be used in a clinical trial in 2013 led by Jan Theys and Philippe Lambin at the University of Maastricht in The Netherlands. A successful outcome could lead to its adoption as a front-line therapy for treating solid tumors.”

If all pans out as predicted, then we could see the therapy become a major new tool in defeating cancer. “This therapy will kill all types of tumor cell. The treatment is superior to a surgical procedure, especially for patients at high risk or with difficult tumor locations,” said Professor Minton. “If the approach is successfully combined with more traditional approaches this could increase our chance of winning the battle against cancerous tumors.”

How My Brain Tumor Woke Me Up To Life

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Posted 28 Aug 2011 — by James Street
Category Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Educational, experimental treatments, Support Groups

Posted: 8/28/11 10:27 AM ET

Diagnosed with a brain tumor in 1998 when I was 24 years old, I knew nothing about cancer. Since then, my health and healing journey has taken me to places far and wide.

Within one month I had undergone awake brain surgery at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). I felt my left temporal lobe brain tumor — the center of speech, memory and sound — required awake brain surgery to help protect my cognitive functions. Twelve hours of surgery later — complete with awake speech and memory testing — neurosurgeons removed the brain tumor along with some surrounding tissue. In the ICU, my brain re-routed, my cells repaired, my bones mended, my jaw slowly unlocked, my heart trembled, my body acclimated to new terrain, my soul sung tunes and my spirit held me.

“You need to track brain tumor scientific studies for your tumor type and care for yourself,” said one of my neurosurgeons. I had no concept for any of it. Crisis serves as a powerful teacher and a catalyst for change.

Several opinions from pathologists diagnosed a lower grade stage of a brain tumor. For cancer patients, multiple opinions are necessary. No conventional cancer treatments were recommended. Instead, I had frequent MRI scans at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC).

Recovering from my surgery and learning about anti-cancer modalities, I built a team of providers and developed self-care strategies. I developed my health and healing map over many years. Some approaches and therapies supporting me involve acupuncture, herbs, holistic medical care, craniosacral treatments, exercise, dietary changes, homeopathy, Shamanic work, energy healing, dental work, psychotherapy and support groups.

Over time, my personal journey and professional cancer work begged the question, “What do people with cancer really need for improved quality of life and survival?” The answer for me has been integrative cancer care. Integrating more than the cancer diagnosis, integrative cancer care addresses the whole person of body, mind and spirit, including social and environmental health. I’ve found studies that show that integrative cancer care can possibly reduce cancer risk, and improve cancer survival and quality of life.

My integrative cancer care plan continues to evolve. In some ways, I began to feel stronger. Some aspects of my health and healing moved forward while other aspects moved backward. Dealing with fatigue and other ailments, I was finally told news about my tumor’s recurrence in February 2004. Not only was I informed about my brain tumor recurrence, I learned that the tumor actually regrew in 2000. Despite my frequent MRI scans, my doctor never informed me. It was a double whammy. Getting copies of medical records, questioning hospitals claiming to offer the best of cancer care, learning about advocacy and self-care — these were only some of the lessons I learned.

Moving toward thinking and creating anew, I added more integrative therapies and made more changes to my life. During the last five years, I completed four major cancer protocols, including three at cancer clinics in Europe and one in New York City. Once again, I became stronger in some ways, but other health problems surfaced simultaneously.

I’ve constantly tried to figure out where I have been and need to go. Now, more than 13 years after my brain tumor diagnosis, surgery, recurrence, more than 30 MRI scans, many cancer therapies, healing modalities, introspection, study and resources, my life contains new knowledge and personal transformation. I embrace adversity as opportunity, seeing healing as a never-ending road and life as a spiritual journey.

But change has occurred once again. A new chapter in my brain tumor journey began three weeks ago. My most recent MRI scan the end of July 2011 showed that my brain tumor requires me to have a second brain surgery. I’ve worked extremely hard trying to heal holistically and trying to avoid another surgery. Yet to stay alive, that is what I must do. On September 1, 2011, I’ll have awake brain surgery at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) with Mitchel Berger, M.D.

While I live with uncertainty, vulnerability and sometimes pain, my knowledge and strength carries me forward. Eager and open to transforming my challenges into opportunities, I further evolve into my deeper self.

Through my own personal cancer experience and professional cancer work, I’ve identified some essential tips for cancer patients:

1. Self-Care: Make yourself a priority each moment, hour, day and week. Support your own whole person. Definitely sleep, relax, eat healthy, reduce stress, use mind-body support, lean on your spiritual and social connections, live in a clean and green environment and address any other needs you may have.

2. Support Team: Love yourself and receive support. Create a group of family members and friends to help you through your cancer journey. Specific types of support are wide and varied. You can even use Internet-based programs to organize help. Find what works for you. Be open.

3. Advocacy: Self-advocate, and receive help from loved ones and other professionals to navigate your cancer diagnosis, side effects, treatments and journey. Move step by step. Conduct research, ask quality questions, seek multiple opinions, maintain a willingness to change directions when necessary, and use other resources to improve quality of life and cancer survival.

4. Choose Quality Providers And Build A Team: Choose an oncologist with expertise in your specific cancer and access to excellent treatment facilities. I believe that quality cancer care must include other treatments for the cancer diagnosis and your whole person. Identify a group of integrative providers tending to many aspects of your health and healing. The full spectrum of comprehensive integrative cancer care will not come from one professional — instead it will occur through the help of a team.

5. Joy, Love, Passions And Purpose: Focus your attention on what you enjoy and the way that love brings light to your life. Express your passions and purpose in order to strengthen your innate healing capacity. I believe that passions flow through your heart. Purpose feeds from your core through embodiment of heart, soul and spirit.

With these essential tips, many other cancer resources, my personal cancer knowledge and professional cancer work, my commitment is to help people with cancer. You can learn more about integrative cancer care resources for the whole person through my non-profit organization called EmbodiWorks at www.embodiworks.org.

David Servan-Schreiber dies at 50; physician wrote about cancer battle

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Posted 26 Jul 2011 — by James Street
Category Brain, Complementary and Alternative Medicine, experimental treatments

David Servan-Schreiber, a French-born doctor and neuroscientist, became an advocate of harnessing the body’s own defenses to fight cancer after learning he had a brain tumor 20 years ago. He turned his personal journey into books that changed how the disease is viewed and treated.

David Servan-Schreiber

David Servan-Schreiber’s 2007 book “Anticancer: A New Way of Life” sold 1 million copies and led to a sea change in how cancer was viewed and treated. (Viking / Penguin)

By Kim Willsher, Special to the Los Angeles TimesJuly 27, 2011

Reporting from Paris — When he was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor 20 years ago, David Servan-Schreiber, the French-born doctor, neuroscientist and later bestselling author, took the phrase “physician, heal thyself” to heart.

Submitting to the punishing traditional treatments of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, he still felt there was something more he could do to enhance his chances of survival.


FOR THE RECORD:
An earlier version of this article incorrectly reported the name of David Servan-Schreiber’s wife in the list of survivors and omitted two children.


Armed with his will to live and a belief that the human body had little-known cancer-combating capacities of its own, he set about looking into the way we understand and battle the disease.

From his research came the successful book “Anticancer: A New Way of Life,” published in 2007, that sold 1 million copies and led to a sea change in how cancer was viewed and treated.

Servan-Schreiber’s near two-decade exploration of the science of cancer was a personal and professional journey that took him from the verge of death to good health and back again twice before ending in his death Sunday at a hospital near his family’s home in Normandy, France. He was 50.

Even when told last year that the brain cancer had returned and would almost certainly kill him this time, Servan-Schreiber refused to give in, continuing to promote the idea that, parallel to traditional medicine, healthy eating along with meditation, yoga and “a new way of life” could extend the lives of cancer sufferers.

David Servan-Schreiber was born in the wealthy Paris suburb of Neuilly-sur-Seine on April 21, 1961, the son of a celebrated French family with Prussian Jewish roots. David was the eldest son of Jean-Jacques Servan-Schreiber, a respected journalist, essayist and politician, who died in 2006.

He studied medicine at a children’s hospital in Paris, finishing his medical degree at Laval University in Quebec in 1984 before specializing in psychiatry in Montreal and moving to a research post at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, where he earned his doctorate.

In 1991 he went to Iraq as a volunteer medic with the French-based Doctors Without Borders, the nongovernmental organization that won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1999, and later co-founded the U.S. branch of the charity.

The story goes that he discovered he had a brain tumor only when in 1991 a research patient failed to turn up for an MRI scan and Servan-Schreiber took his place.

He underwent treatment but had a relapse a few years later and began to seriously turn his mind and his work to the effects of diet and lifestyle on the incidences of cancer and depression.

His first book, “Healing Without Freud or Prozac,” titled “The Instinct to Heal” in the United States, was published in France in 2003, translated into 29 languages and sold 1.3 million copies. “Anticancer” followed four years later.

Certain critics dismissed Servan-Schreiber as a “new age guru” who proposed quack theories that more vegetables, more exercise and less stress were a cure for cancer. On the contrary, he was quick to admit that traditional methods such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy were the first and most important salvos in the battle against the disease. However, he believed the body harbored a number of natural defenses that could create a terrain in which cancer would find it hard to thrive.

Said Ursula Gauthier, journalist and coauthor of his last book, “We Can Say Goodbye Several Times”: “He wasn’t a great thinker, a philosopher or a mandarin of science or medicine. He described himself as a scientist and a human. He was a mixture of heart and head, intellect and emotion.”

Servan-Schreiber was told his cancer had returned when a brain tumor, which he called the Big One, was diagnosed in May 2010.

At the time he said: “Death is part of life. It happens to everyone. Profit from now, do the important things.

“I am convinced that ‘Anticancer’ has played an important role in the fact that I survived cancer for 19 years when the first diagnosis gave me only six at the most.”

Survivors include his wife, Gwenaëlle, and three children.

news.obits@latimes.com