Mistletoe Cancer Support: Iscador

Extracts of mistletoe (viscum album) are the most commonly used adjuvant to conventional cancer treatments in worldwide.   Several mistletoe extract preparations exist, however Iscador is the most commonly used and researched.  It is still underutilized in the United States, where conventional oncology has a strong-hold and alternative cancer support and therapies are highly discouraged by political pressures originating the status quo medical and pharmaceutical complexes.  This is true, despite conventional medicine’s high degree of failure in treating most cancers. 

The popularity of mistletoe extracts, IV vitamin C and other therapies has grown recently, and this is partly credited by figures such as Suzanne Somers and spreading word from other patients who have successfully utilized alternative therapies to support their cancer treatment.  Somers had node negative breast cancer  and was treated with a lumpectomy and radiation.  The addition of  Iscador, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and other non-conventional approaches, integrated into her treatment/prevention program has helped Somers thrive.   The important thing to note here, is that conventional cancer treatment is often very helpful and, depending on the specifics of an individuals disease, may be the best approach to successfully eliminate cancer.  So-called alternative medicines can be very supportive, at a minimum, and, overall, possibly more effective than conventional care when there is little research to support the conventional approaches.

It should be stressed that each patient’s cancer fight is unique and it is important for a qualified integrative medicine doctor to guide the patient toward treatments that are most effective to establish health and eliminate disease.  

Perhaps the most extensively researched alternative therapy, with a number of clinical trials and many hundreds of case reports, mistletoe extracts have demonstrated substantial benefit for patients with a variety of cancers.   The following is an excerpt from a 1990 report by the Office of Technology Assessments on Mistletoe:

Mistletoe has long been used in the treatment of a variety of acute and chronic conditions. It was not widely used for treating cancer, however, until the 1920s, during the early development of Anthroposophy, a modern ‘spiritual science’ applied to medicine and a variety of other disciplines. At present, mistletoe is given to patients either as the central component of a complex, broader treatment regimen in the practice of Anthroposophic medicine mainly in Europe or as a single agent partially or completely removed from the overall context of Anthroposophic care (e.g., in the United Kingdom and other countries). At present, mistletoe preparations are advocated mainly by Swiss and German physicians practicing Anthroposophic medicine, but are also used by other European physicians not necessarily associated with Anthroposophy. A larger group of researchers in Europe, and to a lesser extent in the United States, has focused on the study of mistletoe’s biological properties in various experimental systems.

The following study examines the long term results of 1,668 cancer patients treated with Iscador and compares them with over 8,000 matched patients, not treated with Iscador.  A significant benefit in terms of quality of life and survival is clearly demonstrated for breast, colon, rectum, stomach, lung cancers.  LINK

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