Above is one of the chemotherapy that is used to fight against many different types of cancer.
It’s effective in curing cancer at early stages, controlling advanced cancer and providing patients with symptoms relief at late stage.
Instead, patients choose apricot seed, snake grass leaves, Vit B17 or others.
There is always newer ‘treatments/ supplements’ after a certain duration when people start realising that the older ones are not effective.
Previously, it was Vitamin B17, then it was Sabah snake grass.
Now, I think apricot seed is trending after both the earlier ‘treatments’ failed miserably.
How about avoidance of sugary foods? I’m okay with it because there are so many other foods that my patients can take.
When their condition worsened, patients came back.
From curable stage to incurable.
From incurable stage to very symptomatic (breathless non-stop, severe pain that causes sleepless nights and days, fungating tumor or ulcers that bleed and emit smelly discharges, paralysis due to cord compression and others).
I can ‘close one eye’ when people who sell supplements, which can results in fairer skin, slimmer body, bulkier muscles, bigger boobs or etc.
You crossed the line when you put patients’ life at risk; cancer patients, hypertensive patients, diabetic patients, patients with heart diseases or others.
Regulation is only part of the solution.
Often, once a product is deemed supplements, herbal or health tonic, it escape the very-super-extremely stringent pharmaceutical regulations that applies only on medications.
I can’t understand why all those useless and harmful ‘treat-all’ alternative supplements can be allowed into the market in the first place?
If it’s beyond your scope of responsibility? Expand and enforce it then.
Zero study on those supplements for cancer treatment also can approve but proven life saving and life prolonging cancer treatments backed by well conducted clinical trials take ages to be approved, WTH.
Our own national pharmaceutical regulatory authorities (NPRA) are so strict with drugs/ medications that already had approval from even stricter FDA or EMA but are so lenient when it comes to approving supplements which do not provide an iota of benefit or efficacy data.
Please (hand clasped) change the mindset and re-align your focus to all unproven supplements out there claiming to be effective in treating cancers.
Approving supplements just because they do not contain toxic substances is not adequate.
And if got extra time or extra staffs, to regulate those supplements which I ‘close one eye’ earlier also.
The truth is not what patients want to hear.
I can’t promise cure if patients are having advanced cancer and cancer had spread/ metastasised to other parts of the body (if just spread to just one part of the body, cure might still be possible).
It’s just not possible once there is widespread metastasis.
However, cancer is very much curable in earlier stages (hence, the above title of my posting today).
It’s not easy to convince patients, especially when I’m against irresponsible people who sell ‘miracle’ supplements that can treat-and-cure-all.
It didn’t help also when their family and friends also suggest this and that to them. It’s a daily battle for me in the clinic.
Side effects? With adequate hydration and pre-medications (medications that are given before chemotherapy such as anti-vomiting, anti-diarrhoea, anti-allergic, etc), side effects from chemotherapy are so much lesser these days.
Patients should just visit our daycare and talk to patients who are in their 50s, 60s and even 70s having their chemotherapy treatment.
They will tell you that it’s mostly tolerable.
The ones who had slightly more side effects are those who curi-curi continue taking their alternative medications or those who doesn’t drink enough water.
IMHO, MOH need to allow doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies to promote their services and products.
Do patients know that whatever chemotherapy, biologic therapy, targeted therapy and immunotherapy available in Singapore is available here also? Similarly, in both countries, patients need to pay for advance (targeted therapy, immunotherapy, etc) treatment. However, if you take into account the currency exchange rate, I foresee more Singaporeans will come over to JB/ Malacca/ KL for their treatments soon.
Do they know treatment regimes used in Singapore is similar as in Malaysia also? Oncologists cannot simple create their own ‘recipes’. We follow strictly international guidelines backed by evidence from clinical trials.
Patients won’t know all these if government does not allow promotion by doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies.
Instead, those selling supplements can promote everywhere with unsubstantiated claims and get away with it.
Why? Because nobody regulates them.
It’s time for change and improve.