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Ask Dr. Gott 12/21

Did Mexican treatments cure woman's cancer?

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Posted: December 20, 2006 5:00 p.m.
Updated: January 4, 2007 5:00 a.m.
DEAR DR. GOTT: Several weeks ago, you printed a letter from a gentleman whose wife had terminal cancer and he was wondering what to do. You mentioned (in a very unfavorable manner) the possibility of seeking alternative treatment in Mexico. I would like to respond to some of your comments.
    First of all, you mention that the treatments are unproven. I personally have seen many, many successful treatments. You certainly have to admit that not all treatments here in the United States are successful, either. I do understand that they have not met our standards as far as testing is concerned.
    You also mention they are expensive. Let me tell you my experience. My first nine treatments (spread over a period of three years) cost approximately the same as my last chemo treatment (of which there were a total of six). Now which seems expensive to you? Unfortunately, because these treatments are not allowed here, there are always travel, lodging and food expenses to add, which is what makes it expensive!
    As far as being uncomfortable — this is the area where you are completely off base. I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 1996 and did the regular chemo routine. It made me so ill I nearly died and said I would never do that again. When it reoccurred in 1998, I decided (after lots of prayers) to go to Mexico. I have never felt bad in any way from my treatments there. Before I started there, I was told by my doctor here that I would feel fairly well for six to nine months, and then it would be downhill. In July it was seven years, so I feel that is a pretty good response, and I am very thankful for it.
    Unfortunately, I think there is another reason this is not pursued, and this one causes me great grief. Why would our oncologists, cardiac surgeons, internists and especially the pharmaceutical companies be interested in safe, easy, cheap treatments that would threaten their incomes? This does not just apply to cancer. I have seen fantastic results in cardiovascular disease, Parkinson's disease, lupus and diabetes.
    I'm sure by now you think I am a fruitcake, but I am a registered nurse, and I feel I can judge quite fairly what I see. I truly feel God led me to go down there, because, until I did, I felt anyone who even considered it had lost their mind.
    DEAR READER: It's difficult for me to make a judgment in your case because you had some standard chemotherapy in the United States. This might have been curative. Or you may simply be one of the lucky patients whose cancer went into spontaneous remission. Without knowing the drugs you were given in Mexico, I cannot comment on their effectiveness.
    It is my understanding that patients who rely on unproved "cures" tend to die somewhat earlier than do patients who receive standard therapy. Therefore, in many respects you were fortunate, and I am glad that your outcome was positive.

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