Realities of Current Treatments
Current Treatments are Painful, Damaging, and Outdated:
Current treatment for Childhood Cancer is excruciatingly painful for the children who must submit to it and for the families and friends who have to helplessly witness it. And while we hear that progress has been made in the “survival” rates of childhood cancer since the 1960’s, at what price? More than 62% of children who have “survived” cancer treatment suffer from serious life-long disabilities and health problems – many times leading to early death. The treatment itself, the resulting side-effects, and long-term affects are unacceptable.
Here is the painful reality of the treatment and its effects:
Most children’s cancers are treated primarily with chemotherapy over the course of one to three (or more) years. Some cancers also require radiation therapy, surgery, and/or bone-marrow transplants.
CHEMOTHERAPY IS NON-SPECIFIC:
Chemotherapy is a group of highly toxic chemical drugs that were developed to kill fast-replicating cells. They are non-specific (don’t distinguish between diseased and healthy cells) and are designed to kill ALL fast-replicating cells – the good as well as the bad.
COMBINATION THERAPY WITH SEVERAL CHEMOTHERAPIES COMMON:
Most pediatric cancer protocols call for combination chemotherapy which involves the infusion of several different toxic drugs over the course of time to kill cells at differing levels of development. �
THE SHOTGUN APPROACH:
Current childhood cancer treatment employs the primitive “shotgun” approach to fighting cancer. In other words, kill all of the cells repeatedly and hope that you’ll kill the right ones in the process and keep them from coming back. The “shotgun” approach takes a serious toll on children’s small bodies.
Side-Effects of current treatments:
LOSS OF HAIR/LOSS OF DIGNITY/CONSTANT NAUSEA, MOUTH SORES, VOMITING:
Because hair and the gastrointestinal tract also consist of fast-replicating cells which the chemo/radiation impacts, children experience hair loss, excruciating mouth and esophageal pain and sores, and severe nausea and vomiting.
LOSS OF ENERGY/ ANEMIA/, RISK OF EXCESSIVE BLEEDING, RECURRENT TRANSFUSIONS:
Because chemo and radiation therapy also destroys good red blood cells and platelets, children also suffer anemia (low red blood cell count) and a tremendous loss of energy and risk excessive bleeding. The loss of red blood cells and platelets means that children have to endure routine blood transfusions to boost their energy level and must restrict physical activities that might cause them to bleed.
INCREASED RISK OF INFECTION THAT CAN LEAD TO DEATH, CONSTANT FEAR OF DEATH:�
Both chemotherapy and radiation therapy result in a drastic reduction or total elimination of white blood cells which our bodies need to fight infections. Accordingly, pediatric cancer patients often live in fear of contact with germs and viruses which, while not harmful to other people, could kill them.
LONLINESS, ISOLATION, AND PSYCHOLOGICAL DAMAGE:
Hence, children undergoing cancer treatment must limit contact with friends and family leading them leave school and to have a deep sense of loneliness and isolation. This is particularly difficult with children above the age of eight who developmentally need to become more social and independent. Healthy psychological development for these children is stunted.
LONG-TERM PHYSICAL AND EMOTIONAL LATE EFFECTS OF CANCER TREATMENTS.
Studies done on survivors of childhood cancer indicate that more than 62% of those that do survive cancer treatment suffer from serious long-term health and emotional disabilities. Many chemotherapies have a life-long toxicity that can cause secondary cancers, heart and liver damage, brain damage or disabilities. Not to mention the very real possibility that those survivors will be uninsurable and dependent due to the cancer treatment that they had as children.
Current treatments are outdated, and antiquated in this day and age of modern science, especially when the answers are within reach. Today, children with cancer continue to be treated with highly toxic cancer drugs that were developed 20 to 30 years ago.
If these were your children, would this be ACCEPTABLE?