Thank you, Annie, for all your effort and time to contribute in making known that cancer patients in Wales are not able to use Bevacizumab (Avastin) for their treatment as easily as patients in other parts of the United Kingdom. I owe it also to you that I became aware of the existence of the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine and the possibility of getting a prescription for Iscador injections through the NHS rather than a private homeopathic doctor.
I have been an ovarian cancer patient, stage IV, for almost two and a half years. I have just finished a third line chemo treatment and I was away till yesterday for a short break, that is why I'm trying to send this message to you in the form of an open communication this morning.
My suggestion is that there is more to be made publicly known about this unpredictable disease and perhaps we could have an exchange of ideas devoted to this issue, if there is any interest at all. My particular interest is the lack of awareness among orthodox oncologists of Iscador as a form of maintenance medication against cancer widely used, to my knowledge, in Germany, Switzerland, Holland, Austria, Denmark, Israel, the USA and Canada. Why is there such lack of information about its existence here in the UK? Is there any reasonable explanation? It is true, Iscador does not work for everybody, but neither can any chemo drug claim success with everybody. In the end a successful choice of a drug can also be a matter of good luck since the interaction of our body with each drug differs from person to person. A patient though should be aware of choices and the reason for making a particular one.
Also, there is a widespread belief that exercise is a very good component in the fight against cancer. Instead of all this being mentioned just in leaflets which we may pick up but not read thoroughly, should it not become the task of each oncologist to encourage and make sure that their patients choose a form of daily exercise that suits them? This way would be more personal, the message could get through more effectively.
There are many conflicting views about diet. Some sort of common ground ought to have emerged by now as a path to follow rather than us be left in the wilderness to research and make our own choices.
There is a huge problem with pharmaceutical companies dictating research towards very expensive drugs by giving grants only for the research in their preferred area. We, as patients, are immediately affected by this practice. Perhaps we can make a difference by raising awareness. There is a lot of information about this practice and its harmful consequences.
I am immensely grateful for the existence of these two blogs, TeamInspire in the USA and Ovacome through HealthUnlocked in the UK, because of so much valuable information I was able to digest through personal stories of patients who were prepared to share their experiences. In this way I came to believe, "I'm living with cancer, I'm not dying of cancer." The fact that I shall soon become seventy and have a stage IV ovarian cancer, despite the statistics about survival rates of 18-25 months, has not deprived me of discovering new venues of adventure in my life. I know I may die tomorrow but today I am alive, I can enjoy what I have.
I shall finish my contribution to this debate with an extract out of an email I sent to a friend from the break we had recently and wish everybody in this blog good luck and the very best for joy in life, the way each one of us perceives it.
"Well, we feel triumphant this afternoon coming back after an 11 and 1/2 km. walk by an irrigating channel, called "levada" in local Portuguese, at a height of 300 metres, circling fifteen deep valleys, one after the other, terraces everywhere, with numerous vegetables and vines on prime soil, and, to crown it all, forests of mimosa trees in blossom all the way aromatising the breeze; mountain villages and faraway views all around. This is paradise on earth for me and I'm glad I had the opportunity to enjoy it at this stage of my life."