My Tumor Shrunk!

"The snake oil salesman is still alive."

The US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has put up a web site to protect consumers against scams

One of the articles suggests "Red Flags", aka treatment claims that should tickle your antennae.  Among them, (& I quote):
  • "Treats all forms of cancer"
  • "Skin cancers disappear"
  • "Shrinks malignant tumors"
  • "Non-toxic"
  • "Doesn't make you sick"
  • "Avoid painful surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, or other conventional treatments"

Now, how in the heck does one avoid spluttering when presented with these claims— usually in combination, mind you!  For an idea of what goes through my head, think on a Lothario-in-heat who promises the sun, moon, & stars, who inflates his person & worth then stands on his head... all in the pursuit of droll short-term ends.  In both cases, shrewd calculations are made of the “sweet nothings” that perceived suckers are wanting to hear.


Transferring my old blog....

This blog was started in 2006 at a Philippines-based site.  From the outset, it had received its share of clicks, but only a small fraction of those came from local readers.

I'm a great fan of Google products.  Let's see what Blogger's interface can do.  So far, its been interesting...


Choosing an Oncologist in the Philippines - Part 2

Part 1--> here.

Which type/s of oncologist/s do you need?  Now, you may be a Mensa member but this area is a matter of information, not IQ.  Further, if you’re a take-charge CEO with a bundle of money, take care not to drown in it.
  • A trained surgical oncologist?  Exceedingly rare.  Its not the same as “cancer surgeon”, you know.
  • A gynecologic oncologist?  Yes, they do exist as a superspecialty to treat malignancies of the female reproductive tract.
  • A marrow transplant specialist?  Oh my.  Count them on the fingers of one hand.
  • A sarcoma pathologist?  Ditto.
  • Many other instances apply, I’m afraid.
Best thing to do– go to a big cancer center.  Ask for a multidisciplinary meeting.  Don’t see a single specialist alone– lay your case before The Team.
  • Seek a second opinion.
  • Can parts of the treatment plan be executed at another hospital?  Many of the docs cover smaller/cheaper institutions.  Major cancer centers can also refer you to a gamut of networked specialists, from provincial areas to large first world institutions.  Your options would be greatly expanded.
  • “…but this is my budget.”  The Team will discuss current standards of care, ie, “best”/ideal treatment.  Frequently, there are alternatives that would not sacrifice outcome significantly.
  • “Do you have ongoing clinical trials for me?”  You don’t pay to go on a trial.  The investigational medication is usually provided by the pharmaceutical companies.  
Pitfalls next.