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Complementary Medicine

Are There Any Beneficial Alternative Medicine for Bladder Cancer Treatment?

01/17/2003

Question:

I've been diagnosed with bladder cancer and have received both chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Are there any benefits to alternative medicine in the treatment of bladder cancer?

Answer:

I don`t have any specific recommendations for bladder cancer, but I do have recommendations for cancer in general. My suggestions are that an integrative approach, i.e. mind-body-soul, be utilized.  For example:

1)Mind-"you can`t afford the luxury of a negative thought".  Mind-Body interventions such as positive affirmations, meditation, relaxation therapies, guided imagery (focusing on your system cleansing itself of all cancer cells) may all be helpful (and maybe even critical!) in the healing process. Sources of stress and anger should be dealt with and if possible, replaced with thoughts of love and forgiveness.

2)Body-nutrition: try to get at least 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Green tea has anti-cancer properties, and purple grape juice and other deeply colored fruits/veggies are full of antioxidants. Stay away from animal fats and trans fatty acids (in margarine and many processed foods). Fish like salmon, tuna, herring, halibut, and mackerel are all sources of the "good" fats...those high in Omega-3-fatty acids. Use those as well as legumes as your source of protein. White sugar and flour are difficult for your body to digest, and take away nutrients from your system in order to be processed. Avoid these if possible.  Exercise is important for overall health. Supplements may be helpful as your body is working to rid itself of cancer cells. It needs all the resources (like antioxidants) available. I recommend Vitamin C 500mg. 2x/day, Vitamin E 800iu./day, and Selenium 300ug./day. Get plenty of rest so that your body has time to rejuvenate.

3)Soul-Nurture your spirit, whatever your belief system may be. Things like prayer, meditation, communing with nature, being with friends, and laughing a lot may be just the ticket to making sense of the cancer diagnosis, and finding some peace during this portion of your soul`s journey.

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Response by:

Tanya I Edwards, MD, MEd Tanya I Edwards, MD, MEd
Formerly, Associate Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University