The first time I met my oncologist, I was ready to hear positive things like “You can beat it” “We will help you along the way to you becoming cured”…you know, good vibes for the start of my journey after the craniotomy. Not the case. I’d been so positive and optimistic from D-day about how I was going to be fine and with the Doctors help we could beat it. I fully believe there is still a chance I can beat it but unfortunately, this wasn’t a shared view. My Oncologist said, “I just want to establish, we cannot cure you, we can only prolong your life and we will do our best in doing so.” BUZZ KILL. My whole Rocky Balboa training montage got drop kicked back down the stairs - HARD.
Now I probably owe my oncologist and traditional treatments a lot but I’ll be very honest, I was so bummed out from that meeting. It was a huge reality check. I was an optimist and he was a realist. In a situation like this you need hope and although we were opposites and he wasn’t saying what I wanted to hear, he said what he honestly thought and what I needed to hear.
He gave me the motivation to not just sit back and follow orders. This conversation led me to researching things I never would have been offered that could potentially help my chances of survival (traditional medicine deems survival as over 5 years with a brain tumour – I call survival hitting at least 65) and also improving my quality of life. Things popped up: Ketogenic Diet, CBD Oil, Turmeric, Spirulina, Green Tea. The list goes on which is great but at the start it was quiet overwhelming. We found a website which explains all these hopeful options and great case studies about users with success stories:
Introducing Chris Woolhams. Chris lost his daughter at age 22 from a grade 4 brain tumour. So we related to him immediately as I was 23 but still fighting. Chris believes that brain tumours are curable or at least manageable. He pushes natural and complementary supplements to go along with conventional treatment; like Berberis being used with chemo/temo and having a positive correlation effect. Through Chris I found some hope in my journey against cancer.
We paid to have access to all these case studies and my mum and me would watch them together and progressively build up hope. Once we finished we slept easier. I had a skype meeting with Chris and we gave him all the details of my tumour type/grade/sizing and medical history. He took this all into account when prescribing my herbal remedies which are the following:
2. Berberis (25 drops in water )
3. Peta-sol C powder (1 scoop in water)
4. Vitamin D3
5. Advanced B Complex
9. Total E
10. Caprylic Acid
If you're in a similar situation to me please go and research these and see what might work for you.
A lot right? So every morning I wake up - go to my desk take 6 pills and 2 weird tasting drinks before breakfast. After breakfast, I take 6 more pills and a nasty drink (straight turmeric in lukewarm water). I eat lunch and then take 4 more pills. Dinner, 3 more pills and then finally Keppra (anti-seizure medicine) in correlation to when I took it the morning before. I could take more but I’d get through them so fast, the bills would come flying in!
Now although all of this provides me a lot of hope and control, it is also a constant reminder of my situation. I take on average 20 pills per day and 2 ‘bitter sweet’ drinks. If I go out for dinner I don’t bring my pills, it’s just a sad thing to do when you’re having a nice meal out with family and friends. I’d just rather enjoy myself than think about cancer every time. Speaking as a cancer patient it is quite rare to not think about your cancer. It’s great when you don’t for a long time (12-24 hours) so it’s worth thinking about what’s more important to you. Personally I think it’s worth it.
It’s been important for me to have all these options between visits to my Oncologist because rather than sitting there twiddling my thumbs, I'm doing something that gives me hope. This whole regime is between you and me, my oncologist has no idea I'm taking all this. We did want to be upfront with him and initially said we were investigating other options but when we suggested the Ketogenic diet to him he said,
“No no, it’s all unproven, just keep your life as easy and normal as possible. If you want McDonalds… go get some.”
Now I understand there’s probably a method to this madness and that he couldn’t endorse any of the alternative medicines we mentioned because they could have had a negative effect on me but the fact he said it was ok to get the unhealthiest fast food ever really upset and annoyed me. In the end we made an executive decision to exclude my newly established regime and health kick from our appointments. My oncologist thinks his methods are doing a great job of prolonging my life and he might be but it might also be the alternative medicines. It's a shame we are doing this ‘in the dark’ as I could’ve been a useful case study for developing treatments for brain tumours and or cancer but that's just not how the system works.
I think the medical profession has developed hugely for emergencies like car crashes, brain injuries, child birth/ surgeries. The success rates have improved significantly in operations and A&E situations. They are the heroes. HOWEVER a big flaw is that if you look Atkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, cancer, all of these chronic illnesses have just got worse over decades? The time is now for a shake up of the clinical system.
Doctors are taught minimal information and put very little emphasis on nutrition and supplements for preventing chronic diseases or perhaps even reversing them, they only get taught how to suppress them with medication. Medical mistakes are more often than not covered up to maintain successful statistics. If the Medical worlds adopted the same systems as Aeronautical companies do, they would break down every mistake to the finest detail and in doing so, prevent it from ever happening again but sadly the system doesn’t support that style of innovation because of the pressure to keep a certain rate of success.
Japan has the lowest cancer incident rate in the World. Why aren’t we studying the crap out of them!? It’s sad because all doctors really want to do is to save and improve lives but the system is stopping them by limiting them to the tools that have been “approved”.
TESTING, TESTING , 1,2,3.
We already know my scan results from temo whilst taking Berberis are: shrink-stable- shrink-stable, which is great but we don’t know how I would’ve done without Berberis or how much it effected the treatment. All I know is, I felt good (using this loosely) for someone going through chemo. The five days on it in the month I would rest, then 1-2 days later I’d be back in the gym. We see the movies on how horrible chemo is and it is, you feel nauseous all the time, my mind was clouded and fuzzy, you don’t want to eat, you feel hungover essentially (even thinking about it as I type makes me feel a little nauseous). I think if my tumour grows again, I won’t do the treatment. I’ll take matters into my own hands and do an Orthomolecular Treatment entirely.
Most brain tumour patients are sufferers from fatigue and have seizures either severe or acute. Not me (touches wood). I had my first seizure in March 2015 which allowed me to find out about all of this and that’s it – not one since. I do weight training 6 times a week, play football once a week and pretty much walk everywhere. On the beach I don’t look like I’ve been through what I have, I don’t look skinny, I don’t look tired, I don’t have a slumped posture, I feel like I look good and feel it too. I’ve done a mix of both prescribed and non-prescribed treatments and it has been working very well for me. I think I am on borrowed time, the grade and size of my tumour after scans and biopsies results years ago makes me think I shouldn’t be typing right now but I am. Thank you to Chris, my surgeon Simon and my oncologist Richard for their work. *HIGH FIVE*
Now for a bit of a disclaimer: These pills are unproven, my routine and prescription is made for me, so I’m not saying it will work for you because it’s different for everyone. What I can say is have a look? Do some research; find some hope, take control.
I really believe there is a cure to cancer and that it lies somewhere between traditional and natural/alternative medicine. The big pharmacies know about these options but it’s not profitable to cure cancer, not at all. They’re happy to continue with treatments that aren’t taking us anywhere significant because it’s creating a mountain of money for them. I know some may disagree but this is my brutally honest opinion. There’s no real desire to find a complete and final cure or identify the cause of massive increases in diagnosis because that would make a lot of moneymaking drugs and machines obsolete.
The Doctors really do all they can to help you with what they are provided but nutrition isn’t exactly a priority. Seeing a nutritionist about what’s good for IBD, Diabetes etc is normal but Cancer doesn’t seem to be considered a dietary problem yet which is why I am now doing a diploma in nutrition. I want to learn the deep and dark secrets in health through diet to stir up the clinical system and stop them providing pills that only suppress problems rather than solve them. Healthier lifestyle is the solution.
I hope you enjoyed this one.
The Tumour Slayer