Category Archives: After Cancer

An Immunotherapy and Ovarian Cancer Success Story

An Immunotherapy and Ovarian Cancer Success Story
An Immunotherapy and Ovarian Cancer Success Story

What happens when a patient responds to cancer immunotherapy that, according to advanced medical knowledge, shouldn’t work? Scientists are studying four recent cases where cancer treatment “broke the rules.”

Exceptions to the Rule?

Four women in different countries, who knew each other only through an online support group, were diagnosed with the same rare form of ovarian cancer. Each one persuaded her doctor to use immunotherapy drugs, despite conventional wisdom that the treatment was useless against ovarian cancer.

Against all odds, the patients responded positively, with their tumors going into remission and the women returning to their normal lives. Researchers are hoping to gain insight that will help develop cancer immunotherapy treatments with a broader range of applications.

Why Doctors Were Caught by Surprise

Tumor cells have an ability to deflect attacks from the body’s immune system, allowing them to multiply freely. Immunotherapy is a way of helping the immune system identify and kill cancer cells.

So far immunotherapy has been successful primarily with lung cancer, melanoma and forms with many genetic mutations. By contrast, hypercalcemic ovarian cancer, which is the form that affected the four women, is driven by a single mutation.

The theory is that a lower number of mutations “tricks” the immune system into disregarding the threat posed by cancer cells. Based on the positive results in the women with ovarian cancer, scientists at Johns Hopkins and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center are conducting trials with the aim of further refining cancer immunotherapy.

Comprehensive Cancer Immunotherapy Treatments at Issels®

Our individually created immunotherapy programs are often successful where other conventional treatments have failed. Contact us for more information.

Cancer Treatment: Food Safety Tips After Treatment

Cancer Treatment: Food Safety Tips After Treatment
Cancer Treatment: Food Safety Tips After Treatment

Even after successful cancer treatment, your body is not at full strength. It may be more difficult for your immune system to fight foodborne illness than it was before treatment.

Use these tips to reduce the risk of food poisoning both during and after immunotherapy and other cancer treatment programs.

1. Practice “Safe Shopping”

– Don’t buy food products stored or displayed in areas that appear unsanitary.

– Don’t buy produce with bruises or other visible damage.

– Don’t buy cans that are dented or showing bulges.

2. Follow Careful Prep and Clean-Up Methods

– Rinse and dry all fresh fruits and vegetables.

– Wipe the tops of cans thoroughly before opening.

Wash hands with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds before and after prep. Use the same method to clean all dishes and utensils.

– Disinfect cutting boards and kitchen surfaces using a mixture of one teaspoon of unscented liquid bleach with a quart of water.

3. Watch Food Temperatures

– Always use a food thermometer with meat and poultry to make sure products are sufficiently cooked.

– Perishable foods should be refrigerated or frozen within two hours of buying or cooking, and even more quickly during periods of hot weather.

– Thaw frozen food in the refrigerator and cook immediately afterwards.

Nutritional Immunotherapy at Issels®

Scientists have found a link between poor nutrition and cancer development. Our individualized cancer treatment programs include methods to restore nutritional balance and promote optimum functioning of the immune system.

Contact us to learn more about nutritional immunotherapy and other integrative immunotherapy programs at Issels®.

 

Taking Care of Yourself: Your Appearance is More than “Looking Good”

Look Good, Feel Good
Look Good, Feel Good

Do you think that maintaining good grooming while you’re going through cancer treatment is a luxury? Caring for your appearance is a great way to lift your spirits from the outside in.

Personal Care Tips for Cancer Patients

  • Are you too tired or weak to get out of bed? Keep a portable mirror and grooming supplies in your nightstand.
  • Shave with an electric razor to avoid nicks and cuts that may become infected.
  • Brush your teeth and floss as usual, but consult your healthcare team before scheduling cleanings or other dental procedures.
  • Hair loss is a frequent side effect of cancer treatment. Opt for whatever solution makes you feel best, whether it’s wearing wigs and scarves or shaving your head.
  • Wear rubber or latex gloves during household chores to prevent contact with harsh soaps and chemical cleaning products.
  • Make sure manicuring tools are clean before using. Instead of cutting cuticles, simply push them back gently. Keep nails short to prevent them from catching on things.
  • Treat yourself to a relaxing spa session. Talk to your doctor beforehand if you’re planning a manicure, pedicure or waxing. Artificial or glue-on nails are usually restricted during cancer treatment.
  • Exercise daily at whatever level feels comfortable. Not only does exercise benefit you physically, it relieves depression and anxiety. Yoga is a good choice that promotes harmony between mind and body.

Personalized Immunotherapy Treatment at Issels®

No matter what form of cancer you have, your case is unique. Contact us to learn how we tailor your specific treatment program to address your individual needs.

 

What Does Cancer Remission Mean?

What Does Cancer Remission Mean?
What Does Cancer Remission Mean?

This past April actress Shannon Doherty, who was diagnosed with breast cancer nearly two years ago, announced via social media that she is in remission. But is that the same thing as “cured?” An expert from the American Cancer Society (ACS) takes a look at the meaning of the term.

Does “In Remission” Mean “Cured?”

Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer of ACS, recently spoke to Fox News Health about understanding the true concept of “remission.” Officially, when doctors examine a patient after cancer treatment and find no sign of the disease, he or she is declared to be in remission.

While remission is a major victory for cancer patients, it doesn’t necessarily mean the end of the story. Their doctors continue to conduct regular exams watching for a relapse, which occurs when cancer returns.

Remaining Vigilant After Cancer Treatment

Initially, post-treatment exams are performed every few months, and become less frequent while the patient remains cancer-free. Even so, cancer can sometimes reappear after years of remission. Doctors suspect that such cases arise due to cancer still being present, but too small to be detected.

Chances of a relapse are often affected by the type of cancer and the stage it was in at the time of diagnosis. Cancer patients can also enter partial remission when the size of the tumor decreases by at least 50 percent.

Immunotherapy Cancer Treatment at Issels®

Our personally tailored immunotherapy programs have helped numerous patients diagnosed with all forms of cancer achieve long-term remission. Contact us for more information about our special testing methods and integrative treatment protocols.

New After-Cancer Self-Care Treatments Boost Healing

Create a Positive State of Mind
Create a Positive State of Mind

While immunotherapy for cancer and other innovative methods have improved breast cancer treatment results, women can still suffer from physical and mental side effects that threaten their overall well-being. Many women are finding relief in alternative self-care activities that create a more positive frame of mind and facilitate healing.

1. Brain-Building Exercises

Traditional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy can sometimes impair the brain’s cognitive functioning. Rehabilitation oncology therapists use tools like game apps to help patients keep their minds sharp and boost their memory skills.

2. Hit the Dance Floor

Dance is a joyous and light-hearted alternative to standard physical therapy. The tango has been found to help patients improve balance, gait and side-to-side movements, skills that sometime suffer during cancer treatment.

3. Yoga and Meditation

Yoga and meditation draw heavily on Eastern medicine concepts of the connection between mind and body. Regular practice clears the mind and relieves stress, which boosts the body’s immune function. Guided imagery is a form of meditation that involves a therapist guiding patients through a series of positive mental images.

4. Natural Medicines

Natural vitamins, nutrients and supplements can work well when paired with conventional treatment methods. If you’re considering this course, be sure to consult your doctor and healthcare team to make choices that will not interfere with other medications or treatments.

Issels®: Creating Treatments Based on Each Patient’s Needs

At Issels®, we strongly believe that a patient’s lifestyle and environment play a role in effective immunotherapy for cancer. Contact us today to learn more about our personally-developed integrative programs including non-toxic cancer vaccines and cell therapies.

June is National Cancer Survivor Month – Wear the Purple Ribbon

Diverse Hands Holding The Word Cancer
June 5th is Cancer Survivor Day!

We tend to think of National Cancer Survivor Day as a day that’s set aside to honor all of those who have beaten this dreadful disease. However, here at Issels® we feel that it’s also important to remember the unsung heroes. These are the people who have worked hard by their loved ones’ sides to ensure that they receive the best possible care during their treatments.

National Cancer Survivor Day is June 5. On this day, we want to remember everyone who has fought, or who is still fighting cancer and celebrate them and their journey.

The Effects of Cancer

Unless you’ve been through it, it’s hard to completely understand the effects of cancer. Many patients live their lives in a constant state of fear from one treatment to another, and the side effects that are usually experienced after their treatments can have life-long impact. Their caregivers struggle with knowing if they’re making good decisions, and whether or not their friends and family members are comfortable and pain-free.

Providing Support to Patients and Caregivers

If you know a cancer patient or a cancer caregiver, there are many ways you can honor them; not just on National Cancer Survivor Day, June 5, but all year long. Providing a listening ear helps more than you know, and offering to do tasks such as running errands, cleaning the house, and paying bills is very much appreciated. Cancer patients and their caregivers need to know that they are supported and loved, and you can play a major role in making sure that happens.

This year, on National Cancer Survivor Day, June 5, wear your purple ribbon and show your support!