Saving Breasts, Saving Lives
NATURAL BREAST CANCER TREATMENT OPTIONS
Cora Wallace was 37 when she discovered a lump in her right breast. She was newly divorced, raising two children, and was scared to death. Before she called her doctor, Wallace started researching breast cancer options on the internet. Over half of the 750,000 Americans who travel overseas for medical treatment find clinics through the web.
“I didn’t tell anyone,” Wallace said. “I wanted to do my own research and form my own opinions on the best course of treatment before my doctor and my family pushed me into treatment they thought was best. I had two friends who went through mastectomies, and I watched them go through chemotherapy. I did not want to follow in those footsteps if there was another option.”
Breast lumps that are soft, smooth, round and movable are likely benign. A hard, oddly shaped lump that feels firmly attached is usually cancer. By the time Wallace found her lump, it had probably been there for several years.
The most common cancer in women, breast cancer forms in the lining of the milk ducts, called ductal carcinoma, or in the lobes in the breast, called lobular carcinoma. It can also produce lumps in the armpit and lymph nodes around the breast. Some types of breast cancer are more aggressive than others.
According to the CDC, 101,410 women in the US were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006, and 40,820 women died of breast cancer. Breast cancer typically spreads to the bone, liver, lung and brain. Risk factors include age, lack of childbearing or breastfeeding, obesity, lack of exercise, high hormone levels and alcohol consumption.
Women are taught early to do self exams, and to have breast exams along with their annual pap smears. Although the American Cancer Society recommends mammogram screening for women age 50 or earlier if there are risk factors, Wallace read that radiation from mammograms can actually cause breast cancer. The pressure from squeezing the breast during a mammogram can also spread cancer cells. One study in Sweden followed 60,000 women, and found that 70% of mammogram readings that found tumors were false positive, confirmed by biopsy, leading to unnecessary stress and invasive biopsies.
Standard testing for breast cancer included mammograms, ultrasounds, MRI and biopsy. Breast cancer is commonly treated with surgery to remove the lump or to remove the breast and surrounding lymph nodes. This surgery and radiation treatments can cause lymphedema, or a build-up of lymph fluid in fatty tissues just under the skin. Women who suffer with lymphedema may lose the mobility of their arm, experience pain, itching and thickening of the skin, insomnia, hair loss and irritability. Chemotherapy causes vomiting, hair loss, nausea and extreme fatigue. Radiation of the chest can cause heart damage and severe heart disease may follow. If the cancer growth is spurred by hormones, then hormone blocking drugs are added to the treatment program. Tamoxifin and Herceptin are two such drugs.
Given this information, Wallace was reluctant to seek conventional treatment. Her internet search led her to a a small private clinic near Munch Germany that offered non-invasive, painless treatments that had no side effects.
Radio wave hyperthermia has been used in Europe for three decades, although this type of hyperthermia has not been approved in the USA. Hyperthermia uses specific radio frequencies to heat cancer cells and destroy them. These frequencies do not affect normal cells, so there are no side effects. Treatments are painless and non-invasive.
“I was apprehensive about trying something so new to me,” Wallace explained, “but I knew I did not want to lose my breast, and I did not want to be sidelined by chemo side effects. I needed to work, and to be there for my kids. I spent two weeks at the clinic, and was able to continue my program at home and still work.”
“I discovered that cancer mutates, just like the flu mutates,” Wallace said. “In the US, cancer treatments are pretty much the same today as they were 25 years ago. We make new flu vaccines every year, but we don’t change our approach to cancer. What I liked about Hope4Cancer Institute is that they are always keeping up with the disease, tailoring their treatments to the individual. And they do not use any chemotherapy. I learned a lot about cancer prevention and nutrition while I was there, and I saved my breast. That was important to me. I was never sick during the treatment. And I made some great friends – who ever says that about a hospital stay in the US? It’s been 7 years since my diagnosis; I get thermography and blood work done every year, and I continue to be cancer free. I am so grateful to be healthy.”
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