Integrative oncology associates conventional medicine with complementary medicine, specifically, with therapies that have shown a benefit for the patient as an effective complementary treatment. The global vision of the cancer patient requires physical and psycho-emotional attention. The techniques of complementary medicine provide symptomatic support and improve the quality of life and can help the patient’s survival.
In the United States, the integration between conventional and complementary medicine is so important that more than 50% of cancer patients combine their cancer treatment with complementary treatments (1). There is a recognized national reference center: National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health that is responsible for promoting and researching complementary medical therapies.
The integrative Oncology seeks:
- eliminate the disease (whenever possible)
reduce side effects of treatments
boost the immune system
- avoid malnutrition (caused by disease, chemotherapy, …)
improve the quality and lengthen the life of the patient
Among the most used complementary therapies we find:
- Oncothermia (2)
- Vitamin C intravenously (3,4)
- Phytotherapy and chinese Phytotherapy
- Supplementation and natural nutrition to minimize the adverse effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
- Chinese traditional medicine. Acupuncture
- Diet and Nutrition in cancer. Energy diet therapy
Psychosomatic and psycho-emotional support
Horneber M, Bueschel G, Dennert G, Less D, Ritter E, Zwahlen M. How many cancer patients use complementary and alternative medicine: a systematic review and metaanalysis. Integr Cancer Ther. 2012 Sep;11(3):187-203.
Yeo SG. Definitive radiotherapy with concurrent oncothermia for stage IIIB non-small-cell lung cancer: A case report. Exp Ther Med. 2015 Aug;10(2):769-772. Epub 2015 Jun 11.
Yan Ma, Julia Chapman, Mark Levine, Kishore Polireddy, Jeanne Drisko, Qi Chen. High-Dose Parenteral Ascorbate Enhanced Chemosensitivity of Ovarian Cancer and Reduced Toxicity of Chemotherapy. Science Translational Medicine 05 Feb 2014:Vol. 6, Issue 222, pp. 222ra18. DOI: 0.1126/scitranslmed.300715