Cancer Facts and Betrayals



The Government Is Lying to You about Alternative Cancer Treatments

Like many American taxpayers, until recently I believed that the Office of Alternative Medicine (OAM), within the National Institutes of Health in Washington, D.C., was there to provide citizens with information about alternatives in disease treatment.

When I recently inquired what OAM had on alternative cancer treatments, I was shocked to discover that all they offer is party-line conventional methods courtesy of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) which seems to exist solely to spend billions of taxpayer dollars on unproductive research and the suppression of effective alternatives.

Until earlier this year, OAM sent out a free copy of the "Cancer" chapter from our Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide to those who needed information on alternative cancer treatments. This has stopped abruptly. Now OAM sends out a 3-page statement that dismisses "unconventional" treatments as being essentially worthless and unproven. Here's what their "Cancer Facts" sheet says:

First: "Many proponents of unconventional methods of cancer treatment make claims that are not or cannot be scientifically confirmed." The proof is in the clinic. Ask the patients who have been healed; study the medical reports of the doctors who have produced these healings. Science is based on real observation, not abstract theory. Alternative physicians observe their patients and adjust accordingly. I ask the NCI: where is the scientific proof for the claims that chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery are effective in treating cancer? The proof does not exist.

Second: "Practitioners of unconventional treatments are held to the same research standards as those of any scientist." This means they must be evaluated in controlled double-blind clinical trials. This is impossible and inappropriate given the way alternative therapies work. They are based on a multifaceted treatment; very often an "unconventional" cancer doctor uses several dozen substances and therapies at the same time to get the best combined effect.

There is no single magic bullet in the alternative approach; conventional research standards are worthless with respect to proving what works in our kind of medicine. Further, each patient is different and needs a different dosage and combination of remedies. There is no single boilerplate recipe for treating cancer.

Third: the OAM paper advises readers that "because treatments for cancer must be very powerful, they frequently have unpleasant side effects." This is shameful. Of course chemotherapy and radiation are powerful: like a nuclear bomb, they kill everything in sight. The side effects are not "unpleasant;" they are always toxic and sometimes fatal. There are almost always no "side effects" in alternative cancer approaches; there are only healing effects because the remedies and therapies actually work with the body, not against.

Fourth: OAM states that if you use unconventional methods this "may result in the loss of valuable time and the opportunity to receive potentially effective therapy." This "consequently reduces a patient's chances for cure or control of cancer." Since when does conventional oncology ever talk in terms of "cure"?

The alarming fact is that the reverse is true: If you rely on conventional methods, you are much more likely to lose time and possibly your life than if you gave the alternatives a chance. Many people with cancer die because of their misplaced trust in chemotherapy and radiation.

Fifth: "No one genuinely committed to finding better ways to treat a disease would knowingly keep an effective treatment a secret or try to suppress such a treatment." This is an amazing piece of contortionist propaganda. OAM offers this in defense of the claim by alternative doctors that the mainstream medical community tries to keep their alternative treatments from the public. The fact is that medical alternatives are suppressed, so we must conclude that the OAM, NIH, and NCI, by their own statements, are not genuinely committed to finding better ways to treat disease because they actively suppress information about these treatments.

For complete information on the bills in Congress pertaining to alternative medicine and more political perspectives on medical care, see "The Politics of Medicine".

These are the cancer facts. The betrayals come next. The OAM was set up a few years ago at the instigation of a few well-intentioned members of Congress. Granted, they gave OAM only a few million dollars to work with to investigate the claims and successes of a burgeoning medical field, but the project was launched with a good measure of enthusiasm, integrity, and promise.

However, the fatal mistake was placing OAM within the NIH. This is like asking the fox to guard the chicken coop. How can NIH, dedicated to conventional methods, objectively oversee the investigation of alternatives? What NIH can oversee quite skillfully is the adulteration, perversion, and ruin of a publicly-funded office that was supposed to fairly inform the taxpayer about new and alternative treatments for disease.

From what I've heard through the Washington grapevine, the OAM has been sanitized and made submissive by NIH, so that it is now an obedient and unproductive bureaucracy. People who know about alternative medicine are being forced out while people who are indifferent to it or lack any working knowledge of it are pushed to the forefront. Projects are being derailed, funds are wasted, and public information activities are staffed by people unsympathetic to alternative medicine.

Now, information available to the public is restricted to only those alternative treatments with the NIH seal of approval. We might as well have the FDA running the show for all the legitimate attention alternative therapies will receive in this climate of lying and betrayal of the public trust.

But as NIH, NCI, and OAM are financed by our tax dollars - my money and yours - I am not willing to settle for this betrayal. I hope you're not either. We're paying for it. We must demand better because they're supposed to be working for us. The life you save may be your own.

Express your dissatisfaction by writing: NIH, Office of the Director, Harold Varmus, M.D., Room 126, NIH 1, Bethesda, MD 20892; tel: 301-496-1766; National Cancer Institute, Richard D. Klausner, M.D., Director; 31 Center Drive, MSC 2590, Building 31, Room 11A48, Bethesda, MD 20892. tel: 301-496-5615; fax: 301-402-0338; e-mail: klausner@helix.nih.gov. Office of Alternative Medicine, Wayne Jonas, M.D., Director; NIH, EPS Building, Room 450, 6120 Executive Plaza Blvd., Rockville, MD 20852; tel: 301-402-2466. e-mail: jonas@ od1em1.od.nih.gov.

The cancer fact is this: cancer is treatable and reversible using alternative therapies. The betrayal is in OAM's refusal to tell the public and in their NIH-inspired lie that unconventional methods are medically suspect.

I challenge OAM Director Wayne Jonas, M.D., to talk with our alternative cancer doctors and examine their results. We have seen cancer reversed; we have talked with the patients and taken their testimonials. The public has a right to learn this, especially when it is funding a government office supposedly chartered for precisely that purpose. OAM must be allowed to operate independently of NIH's party line.

The lies and betrayals of the conventional medicine establishment are coming to light. We must all use our citizen's right to call, fax, complain, demand, and vote until we have a medical system able to serve our health needs.

The American Medical Association (AMA) recently approved a resolution to "encourage its members to become better informed regarding the practices and techniques of alternative or unconventional medicine." A representative of AMA's Council of Scientific Affairs urged members to reduce their use of negative language, such as "quackery," and to remain open to information about alternatives.


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