Side Effects of Chemotherapy - do Mistletoe Extracts help?

I’ve just been diagnosed with cancer in both breasts, both stage II, Hormone receptive.
Left one is HER2+ / Grade 3, 3cm
Right one is HER- / Grade 2, 1cm (couldn’t even feelit til after biopsy)

I start chemo soon for 6 cycles, then have bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction
12 months Tamoxifen
9 months Herceptin.

I know a lot of us are really spooked by the dreaded Chemo, but for HER2+ Grade 3’s it really does seem like a life saver, so I am going to go for it.
But OH the side effects daunt me (I am a single parent of an 11 year old and am not keen on him seeing me in that state or becoming my carer)
Plus I am self employed so HAVE to keep working at some level (luckily I can work from home via email and web conferences so can sit in my pyjamas with a pineapple lolly in one hand and a bucket in the other :wink: !)

HOWEVER, I have been looking into complimentary/ natural therapies.
My close friend went through BC with mastectomy and chemo last year… she swears by white Mistletoe Extract therapy (she originally wanted total Naturopath treatment but thankfully was persuaded to have Mastectomy and chemo, with this as a complimentary therapy.)

Have any of you had this? Would be great to hear from anyone who has to see if you also rave about it.

I know it is not yet common in UK but it sounds like it should be.
(I think you can get it on NHS even, but it seems to be a bit of a well kept secret! (not easy to google for info on it! I ended up on German sites)

My advice to all you ladies like me who are about to see your oncologist to ask about options/ pros/cons for getting Misteltoe extracts into your plan as a complimentary therapy
Mistletoe appears to be natural way to get through a load of the side effects of the treatments.(Mother Nature eh? She gives us cancer but grows a plant that’ll help!)

Seems like UK are lagging in complimentary therapy arena.
Germany seem to be pretty much leading the way regards cancer these days, approx 60% of cancer patients there are treated with it, France catching up with 40%, UK finally getting on board, but you may have to fight for it!

Contra-indications:
Not actually many contraindications, some allergies (reddening of the skin), but here is the list I can find:

Findings from a 30 Year Study (Misteltoe has been used since 1920s in Germany! Whay are we only hearing about it now??):

“.

NB: This is NOT an advert, I really think we need to learn about alternative therapies to help us have the best experience, and make better informed choices.
I’d love to hear from anyone who has had Mistletoe extract! Is it as good as it sounds?

Hi,
Sorry about your having to be here, but welcome… I was very wary of chemical treatments back in 2002, but given a below average chance of surviving 5 years, went for it. I raised alternative therapies with my then onco - he pointed out that the chemo dose was calculated carefully to sit on a fine line between being effective or being too toxic - and didn’t want me to do alternative whilst on active treatment. He adjusted the dose if my weight changed at all. I have used alternative treatment but most of all - healthy diet - in between bouts of treatment.

Good luck with the treatments, and with working etc.
Remember that kids can overhear phone convos - my son overheard me say something to a friend and misinterpreted it, got depression. Best to be honest but withhold nitty gritty detail, I feel - which is what I do now. I hope your friends can rally around and help … The parents at my son’s school organised a meal rota for me (after asking if they could help) which was brill - but I had gone first for the mastectomy, chemo & rads after.
Best of luck
Carrot

Thanks Carrot.

I’m on day 3 after first chemo cycle (just EC every 3 weeks x 4, then Pacytaxel every week for 12)
Actually feeling OK right now.

After I sent my oncologist a big doc with loads of background on Mistletoe plus clinical trials data, she supported it as complimentary therapy… but I have to pay as private insurance nor GP fund homeopathy!

Will go for oral drops I think, Dr at Lindon School of Integrated Medicine says it is as effective, and is much cheaper/ easier logistically.
So I will take it cycle 2 onwards and see what difference it makes, if any. Will be interesting test.

I use a heat treatment in china and heat treatment can do it in German as well 

Nearly two year and I am fine 

Refused all reatment other than operation 

 

Thank you for this information. I have visited Germany several times, especially the South, and was surprised to find how backward we were in alternative therapy/ products in comparison. Homeopathic medicines were offered in pharmacies rather than regular drugs. They really work too. I will look into the mistletoe. :slight_smile:

Hi Rattlesnake

Thought I would reply to your post re Mistletoe. Although I am much further past diagnosis and treatment than you are I hope it might help. I was originally diagnosed in 2003 and following surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy I was told that I had a fairly high risk of recurrence in the next ten years. As I was triple negative there was no further treatment I could have to reduce the chance of the cancer returning. I did some research myself and found out about Mistletoe extract and how it is used widely in Germany alongside conventional treatment.My GP at the time was very supportive and referred me to The Royal London Homoepathic Hospital(now The Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine) where I was prescribed Iscador injections which I have been having for some years now. I do the injections myself at home and have had no side effects just some redness and stinging around the injecton site. I am currently very well and have no signs of recurrence. Of course I cannot say how my health would have been without the Iscador but I feel that it has helped me to remain healthy. If you do decide to go ahead with the Mistletoe I hope that it is equally beneficial for you

 

Best wishes

 

Anne