Sunday, July 31, 2011

Weekend Blues

This morning, I woke up to a stiff neck. After lunch, I decided to work on my back a little. I lie down flat on the carpet to strengthen my back as instructed by my acupuncturist. At the same time, I did the block breathing exercises. After a while, I fell asleep. When I awoke half an hour later, I could feel the aching on my bones.

I am a bit tired and don't feel that good. Maybe I should have slept a little longer just now. I had a little headache and sat in the chair brooding. My chest feels a little congested too. What a lousy feeling on a bright Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Time For Everything

I am having problems with my PC, keeps rebooting, most likely hit by a virus. So I will post something I wrote yesterday before it reboots again.

Dying Time
Yesterday, Yeong loan me a book called Cancer As A Turning Point by Lawrence LeShan, PhD. As I browse through the table of contents, I could not help noticed a chapter called The Person Who is Dying. So, I skipped the early chapters and zoomed in directly to this chapter. This chapter is about what people (like therapist and caregivers) should know when working with people who are very sick or people who are in dying mode. For cancer patients, the distinction of the two are not clearly drawn particularly for those who are in advance stage of the illness who have moved from very sick to the dying mode.

Deciding on when the shift occurred is particular difficult for the therapist. LeShan points out "The essence of Dying Time is to see the whole of our lives as a pattern and a symphony in which the themes swell and recede and the whole makes a real and organic whole." In order to work with people in this period, therapists must be aware of something that all psychotherapists should know but rarely do. Therapists cannot pretend belief or interest. Thus honesty on the part of of the therapist is as much an observable, is as real, as mass or inertia are in the world of machines. You cannot fake!

In listening, you must learn not to reassure. What dying people need is someone to hear who they are and what their life is and has been. So you do not say "You have a great deal to live for." Most professionals have long since learned that this is useless and only tells the patients that we have not listened, that we only heard the words and not the feeling and the life behind it. I think this also applies to cancer patients in sick mode too. Very often caregivers and friends often make the mistake of saying something reassuring which does not help. What we want is just for someone to listen.

So basically, whether for therapists or caregivers, it you are not genuinely interest in the patient and are not prepared to listen, do not get involved. Any response from a therapists that come from techniques rather than from human feelings is antitherapeutic. You can only do damage.

Remember what is the most common regret people have at a death bed? If you have forgotten, you can read here. So, what kind of questions and statements are useful in helping patients toward the task appropriate in the Dying Time? In his book LeShan lists many but one stands out:

All our lives we try to change people to what we think that they should be. At this time of life we can often see that love is accepting people as they are and letting them be while hoping and wishing for more for them. Can you do this with those you love? What in you keeps you from this?

Friday, July 29, 2011

It Doesn't Matter Anymore

My sleeping time is now between 2am and 10am, at least I can sleep. As I result I start my day late and as such have I have also cut down on my juices to 10 a day (4 vegetables, 3 carrot and 3 apple+carrot juices). I have stopped taking orange juice. I still take two coffee enemas a day. My glucose level in my last blood test is rather high (although within the permissible range), so I am watching my sugar intake. Already I am not taking sweet fruits or anything sweet but there is only so much one can do.

My sister asked me if If my pain level has increased. I told her I have no grounds to complain about pain because the pain I experienced so far is really very mild. Anyway, it doesn't matter anymore as I am trying the best I can. There have been so many people offering me advice to do this or that. Some of the advice seems to contradict each other. My therapy has served me quite well, so I will stick to my therapy.

Last Wednesday, I took the Mustard Greens (Kai Choy in Cantonese) dish (as in picture) during lunch. Normally, chillies are added because Mustard Greens is a very cooling vegetable. I only took a little of it but since then I have been coughing almost non stopped. This is the first time I took the vegetable since my cancer but in my pre-cancer days, I have no problem consuming large amounts of it without any side effects.

After three sessions of acupuncture therapy, my knee pain has more or less gone. I will have to go a few more sessions. I would like to go more often but the waiting time is normally 1 hour or so. This acupuncturist is so popular (and also possibly the cheapest in town at RM13 per session) that at any one time, between 30-50 patients are waiting in line. But he is good, being his fan for last 20 years. He treats 16 patients at a time and each session lasts 20 minutes. I also noticed that my restless legs problem has improved, the floating feeling is not so pronounced now. However, I have a new problem. Both my thighs now feel tired, especially if I stand for a period of time. Sigh...

Mohd Shafiq Update
Shafiq is still in the General Hospital, Kuala Lumpur. Yeong told me that they last visited him last Monday and his condition is serious. His mother is taking care of him and sleeping beside him. Yeong told me that during his visit, he accidentally knock the bed frame of Shafiq's mother bed and he immediately felt the pain and started crying. This Sunday afternoon, a group of people led by Yeong and Khadijah will be visiting him to celebrate his birthday. Depending on my health condition (especially my coughing), I hope to be able to join them for the celebration.

This news just came in at 2.50pm. Yeong called and informed that as of noon today, Shafiq was not able to breath normally and has to be put under oxygen respiration assistance. Just minutes ago, Khadijah SMSed from the hospital and said Shafiq has slipped into coma. The only thing we can do now is to pray for him.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Tiring Day

Yesterday morning, I went for my acupuncture therapy. I had to wait more than 1 hour over before my turn came. There were just too much patients in the queue. I have been seeing this acupuncturist for about 20 years now. While waiting for my turn, a lady in her 60s whom I thought was a Malay because of her features spoke to me in English. She asked me if I was Chinese and I said yes. She said I had some caucasian features on my face and was not sure if was Chinese. This is the first time I heard someone said I had such features. Anyway, we chatted about our knee problems. She then asked if I am working and I told her no, for I am a cancer patient. She then asked me about my religion and then said since God made us, He can heal us. She asked for my name and said she would pray for me at her church. Just then, it was my turn for treatment and before I left, I told her, "Thank you very much for your prayers." What a kind lady.

I took the opportunity to ask my acupuncturist why I have floating legs. He said this is due to my weak back. He suggested that I sleep on a hard surface for at least 5 minutes a day to strengthen my back.

After acupuncture, I left for OUG to meet a friend, Joanne from New Zealand for lunch. She is in town for a short holiday and also brought me some iron supplements. As a cancer survivor herself, she has urged me to strive on no matter what. I told her I admire all the cancer survivors. I know because it's not easy to become a cancer survivor. She then took me to a vegetarian shop nearby that serves precooked food. I took brown rice and three vegetables dishes while she took brown rice and four vegetables dishes. The price was RM2.50(US$0.83) and RM3.00(US$1) respectively. Chinese tea is on the house. This must be the cheapest vegetarian shop in the whole of Malaysia!

When I came home in the afternoon, I felt very tired and my head was sort of bursting with pain. I was not feeling very good and had to lie down on the carpet for while. I took the opportunity to rest my back as well. I use both my thumbs to apply pressure on the temple of my head to ease the pain. I think I slept briefly and felt better after that. Although there are no pain on my legs, but the legs felt very tired. I was practically limping when I got up and had to massage the thighs. In the evening, I did foot reflexology and became very tired after that. I was also coughing the whole night with whitish phlegm.

Jade, which gave the talk on the Emotion Code had emailed me yesterday evening and told me that she has release trapped emotions (TE) on three areas which are directly related to my cancer on my behalf. She said, I should have some healing reaction in the coming week and asked me to be aware of my body changes and mood swings. I think the headache was one of the reaction. Yes, you can hire a therapist to release TE for you. The therapist can be in another country and you don't have to meet the therapist personally though you need to communicate with the therapist about your problems. Energy knows no boundaries. She did it as a favor for me. The rests, I have to do myself.

The Gender Factor in Cancer
WHEN cancer looms, do men and women react to it differently? Are the issues they deal with similar, or unique? Does gender really matter when it comes to cancer?

In an article, Psychology of cancer, published in a US quarterly magazine for cancer patients, writer Leslie Johnston wrote, “How people adjust emotionally to that reality depends on a number of factors, including type of cancer, stage of the cancer, the patient’s age, marital status, ethnicity, culture, profession and – perhaps the most important of all – gender.”

However, Johnston continued, “where the cancer strikes makes a difference”. He then quoted Les Daroff, the director of psychoneuroimmunology and mind-body medicine at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, to explain.

“If it is stomach cancer, it is perceived as an attack on their stomach, not on their identity,” said Daroff. “However, if it is breast cancer, uterine cancer, prostate cancer or testicular cancer, it attacks their whole psychosocial identity, their way of life and their relationships. Everything they have known is up for grabs.”

There is, however, one subject that patients are reluctant to talk about even when the doctor makes time to offer information. Sex. “This is a big issue, but nobody talks about it openly. When patients come in for consultation, 95% never talk about their relationship with their spouses. They never discuss sex, or other personal issues because they see it as an embarrassment or a taboo,” said Dr Mohd Ibrahim (president of the Malaysian Oncological Society and a consultant oncologist). If they do talk about it, and they rarely do, they might prefer to talk to their nurses as they find it difficult to speak to their doctors directly.

In April 2006, a BBC report of a UK qualitative study by sociology professor Clive Seale noted that men in the study were found to be primarily concerned about treatments, tests, symptoms, procedures and the side effects of drugs.

Women, in contrast, “were more likely to seek social and emotional support, share personal experiences and talk about the impact of cancer on relationships and family.”

You can read the full article here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Feeling Lucky

I restarted my hypnotherapy last evening. I think I last time I met my therapist was in March 2011. She told me that she has always reserved a therapy slot for me and was just waiting for me to call. She asked me how I was doing. I explain to her I am in a tug-of-war. When I first discovered my cancer, the tumor were already leading by 80:20. Then I started the Gerson therapy and managed to gain back some ground to 75:25. Ever since, neither side has made gains but the tumor is still leading. However, in a tug-of-war, it take great effort and energy on my side to maintain status quo. And I have three areas that will deteriorate over time namely a) my will power, b) my energy levels and c) my finances to sustain this therapy. So I have to do whatever is necessary in the meantime to gain back some ground.

You have been hearing me talking about my restless legs. What do I actually mean by that? When I lie down, I feel as if my pair of legs has disappeared! That why, I have to continue to massage it. It could also be a psychological problem.

Anyway, my therapist asked me what are some of the areas that I think is crucial for healing my cancer. I mentioned two areas and then spoke about it. For example, in the first area, I spoke about Fear of Insufficiency. As a therapist, she does not lead me to any conclusion or tell me what I have done is right or wrong or pass judgement. Whatever right or wrong is by my own definition and there are also other ways of looking at things. She was doing a timeline exercise on me, meaning if I had a chance to relive my life all over again with all the knowledge I had now, how would I live differently? This is my homework and she told me that it's going to be a repeated exercise. All in, I had three homework to do.

If I complete my homework, I would possibly meet her again this Thursday if not next Monday. Meanwhile, she has reminded me to do the relaxation exercises that she taught me last year. I also had a chance to talk about my pelvic bone pain with my therapist who is also a medical doctor and she tells me it is most likely the lymph nodes. She work mostly with cancer patients and she gave me a compliment, saying of all her cancer patients, I have the strongest will. Thank you. She also said, she lost some patients when their will power was lost.

Trapped Emotions
I feel very lucky to have attended the Emotion Code Talk and met a very helpful trainer. Thanks to Yeong and Khadijah for arranging the talk. Jade, the trainer has agreed to help me to release a few of my trapped emotions (TE) that are directly related to my cancer. She is also suggesting ways for me to proceed to release other trapped emotions. She said I have a lot of TEs to release! Now that I have learned the technique, it's time to put to good use, starting with myself.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What Can It Be?

After a follow-up on the acupuncture therapy yesterday evening, my legs feel so much better and the pain has gone. Hopefully, the relief is not for just a few days. I am sleeping much better these days but it still happens after 2am.

I noticed that the pain around the abdominal area of my right kidney tumor is being felt more in regularity. This symptom has been ruminating in me for a while. Could the tumor be growing? Physically, I can feel the tumor on my right abdomen with my hands. It's quite painful when I lie on my right side, as the weight of my body presses against the tumor. I have been running my fingers over the left abdominal area as part of my own physical examination every now and then. Just below the ribs, I noticed a small pea size object (or is it a small lump?) beside a vein. Pressing against it is painful. I also noticed that a vein is also visible on the surface of my right abdomen, possibly being pushed to the surface because of the tumor. This vein also caused me some pain, especially if was pressed against. Kidney tumor itself is not life threatening (other than causing extreme pain and bleeding) but when it grows, it can cause compression against the arteries and that's when radical nephrectomy may become a necessity.

Another area that I have been doing self examination is on my right pelvic bone area. It is now obvious that I am not able to run and even walking now is not smooth, with a limp. When I press on the right pelvic cavity during the self examination, I felt a sharp pain. I do not know what to make of it, but it could be that the tumor has spread to my right pelvic area. My next planned CT scan is in November 2011 but I am not sure if I should proceed or not. One of my friend has advised me against surgery because she had a friend with similar condition as me, passed away shortly after surgery. My urologist also advised me not to take surgery because all his patients also died shortly after surgery. So doing the CT scan is only to allow me to know if my condition has deteriorated or not. See how it goes from here.

A new reader who happened to stumble on my blog was kind enough to email me a TCM detox prescription. The reader, KK wrote "I first used it in 1994 when I was diagnosed with late Stage 3 nose cancer. Odds were 60:40 in the tumour's favour. Underwent radiotherapy in parallel with TCM treatment (the sinseh has retired BTW). Still take the detox brew once every few months (I treat it like hard disk defrag)." I printed out the herbs formularies and will have my TCM teacher explain the contents to me.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Barking At The Wrong Tree

I will need to followup on my acupuncture therapy because my legs are starting to show some pain again this morning. After reading some pages of The Emotion Code by Dr. Bradley Nelson, I am taking a different view of some of the pain I am experiencing. I have tried the physical therapies and it did not seem to help very much. At times, the relief if any, is only temporary. Perhaps, I have been barking at the wrong tree. According to some of the case studies that Dr Nelson mentioned in his book, this pain could likely be caused by a trapped emotion. According to Dr Nelson, it is possible to get the answers from my subconscious mind. I just have to follow the techniques mentioned in his book.

I have been in correspondence with Jade, the trainer that gave the Emotion Code (EC) talk last Friday. She is on the way back to Seattle and during her transit stop, she replied to some of my queries. She said "...if I haven't read the EC and have experienced the phenomenal shift myself, in addition to the testimonials in the book. I really can't explain or even believe some of the results I've experienced. Even the author is dumbfounded at times." You can download a free chapter of EC here.

I have been releasing trapped emotions in my emotional healing therapy. But the method that I used is different from that of the book. Jade further said in her email to me "...I know it is different from how we were taught and used to in facing and dealing with our emotions. I feel that EC is less painful and much faster."

The Emotion Code Book
This is a must have book since most people have trapped emotions. It's still very new and may have just arrived at Malaysian shores.

Trapped emotions lower immune function and make the body more vulnerable to disease. They can distort body tissues, block the flow of energy, and prevent normal function of organs and glands.

The list of conditions and diseases below are what patients come to see Dr. Bradley Nelson for treatment, where trapped emotions appeared as a contributing factor, and many times as the entire cause of the condition.

Dr Nelson is not saying that releasing trapped emotions is a cure-all. The Emotion Code should not be used by itself in attempting to address any major disease or
medical condition, but rather, it should be looked upon as an adjunctive therapy. When trapped emotions are contributing to physical illness, removing them can only help.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Easy Sunday

My pair of legs does feel much better after acupuncture but last night, I still slept late, at past 2am after massaging my leg. But the pain that was plaguing my legs are now gone. I noticed that by about 8pm, I feel very sleepy. If I miss this sleeping window time, the next window is around 2-3am. I am now walking with a slight limp as I feel some pain on my right pelvic bone, like a pain from a dislocation.

I have now completed half of my TCM classes, with three more modules to go. I am glad I enrolled for the TCM class because it help me understand so much of my body condition that would not be available from Western medical perspective. Combined with the Western medical perspective, we can have the best of both worlds. These two approaches are not discrete but complimentary. Of course, my course is not sufficient to make me a TCM practitioner (that was not my intention) because it take many more years of practical experience after completing the 5 year TCM course before one can practice. My classmates are a fun lot too and we all look forward to attending classes every Saturday. I understand that they are planning a next level TCM course in English, could not wait to enroll for the next course.

Sabah Snake Grass (SSG) Update
A reader, Justin Choo sent me this link. This farm grows SSG commercially for sale. For those of you who are have problem getting SSG, you can take a short visit to the farm in Seremban, Negeri Sembilan. Detailed instructions on directions to the farm is given at the site. A plastic container containing 500 SSG leaves are sold at RM25 (US$8). Before SSG became famous, the price was between RM20-RM30 for 1,000 leaves.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Something Takes Sometime

This morning, I was rather busy. First I went for my cupping treatment and subsequently I went for acupuncture. The pain on my legs has become unbearable and I have not been sleeping well the last two days. It was really frustrating sitting up in the middle of the night massaging the legs which seems to have very little effect. I refused to take any pain killers, so I have to endure the pain. So I thought, I may as well go for acupuncture to get some pain relief. I think I will split the treatment into different days so that I don't have to rush. I will probably have to go two days a week for acupuncture for better relief. Maybe the pain on my legs are more than just restless legs.

I got my blood test results yesterday and the results were expected, same old problem, low hemoglobin and RBC count (doctor classify as mild anemic) and elevated GGT readings. My blood test results for the last nine months are quite consistent. What surprised me this round was that my calcium result is above the expected range.

I think it will take a little more time for the supplements and my therapies that I am taking to help improve my condition.

The Emotion Code Talk
The Emotion Code talk (based on the book of same title by Dr Bradley Nelson) given by Jade was fun and interesting. It's was a short talk of about 3 hours during which she demonstrated how to release the trapped emotions. She had volunteers out and demonstrated how to use the charts, muscle testing and then the method of identifying the trapped emotion and then releasing it. It's seems quite simple during the demo but she warned that it takes time to develop to her skill level. More importantly, she demonstrated it's possible to do it on our own.

Much of our suffering is due to negative emotional energies that have become 'trapped’ within us. The Emotion Code is a simple and powerful method of finding and releasing these trapped energies.

Many people have found that when they free themselves of their trapped emotions they are able to live healthier and happier lives. A single trapped emotion can create both physical and emotional problems.

Friday, July 22, 2011

I should Have, But...

Today, I will be attending a talk on Emotional Code organised by Yeong and Khadijah. The talk will be held at the SS19/1 Residents' Association premises and I will be away for most part of the morning. I hope to learn something from this interesting subject.

Yesterday afternoon, I was having lunch at this organic restaurant and I spoke to the boss and he told me he is the process of planting Sabah Snake Grass on his farm on a large scale. Hopefully, he will get some good harvest in 6 months time and he will giving them away free to cancer patients. Will let you know if it materialises.

Nurse Reveals The Top 5 Regrets People Make on Their Deathbed
For many years I worked in palliative care. My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly special times were shared. I was with them for the last three to twelve weeks of their lives.People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality. I learnt never to underestimate someone's capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.

When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:

1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I didn't work so hard.
3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

Except for item (4), my list is the same as above. While I cannot change item (2) above, my cancer has helped me live and understand better. I have been working on items (1), (3) and (5) since. It's still work in progress.

I would recommend a very fun movie called Pleasantville. It's a 1998 American fantasy comedy-drama film staring Tobey Maguire (of Spiderman fame). Perhaps it will help you understand better items (1) and (3) on the above list. I will not say more to "spoil" your watch except that it's really a movie about self discovery.

Health Charity Says Four in 10 People Will Get Cancer
I picked up this piece of news form BBC on Sunday.

Macmillan Cancer Support says a decade ago about a third of people, or 33%, developed cancer at some point in their lives. The charity says that figure has risen to more than 40%.

The estimates are drawn from projections published two years ago in the British Journal of Cancer, which concluded that at the end of 2008 there were two million cancer survivors in the UK and that the figure was rising every year.

About 157,000 people died from the disease, and 89,000 who had been diagnosed with cancer died from other causes, making a total of 246,000 who died "with" cancer. The charity says this accounted for 42% of total deaths in the UK.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Somethings Don't Come Easy

When I first started this blog, I had two target groups of readers in mind. The first group are my friends, ex-colleagues and people I met on my cancer journey who wanted to know my progress and need not to call me every now and then to find out my progress. The second group are new cancer patients and/or caregivers who are embarking on the Gerson Therapy who wants to know what to do, where to buy Gerson supplements, see how another person is doing the therapy and would like an avenue to ask for help. That's all. I am sorry if you find the topics covered too restrictive.

I remember when I first started, I had great difficulty in finding information about the therapy. Blogs that I managed to read tend to be general in nature and was not of much help. Along my cancer journey, I met more patients and caregivers that required Gerson therapy support. If you had followed me to some of the meetings, I believe you would also cry. Due to my cancer, I am able to reach these people, give them some comfort, create positive thoughts in their mind and some hope to make their journey easier. I also got feedback that many of them find the book, A Cancer Therapy - Results of 50 Cases difficult to read and understand. I have also received many more emails from anxious caregivers asking me for my assistance on how to begin the Gerson therapy, healing reactions and other technicalities. They still have not overcome the shock and now have to take an alternative therapy after conventional therapy has failed. I am only too familiar with these because I was also in their shoes 22 months ago. Back then I could not get help, hence the setting up of this blog was to fill the gap. Things you would not find in the book, I make it a point to document them up in this blog. I believe this is the true value of this blog. This blog is not about me though I happen to be the author. I have nothing philosophical or spiritual to share. You may not like the style of my writings. Its not about how great or good I am, in fact I have so many weaknesses that I am a fool to blog about and expose myself in the first place.

This blog is technical and contains many of my own experiences and my experiences with some other cancer patients. It is hope that these second group of readers can benefit from my experiences and not do the wrong things that I have done. As a result, you will see a lot of details given. I also know some people could not afford to go to Mexico or Singapore to hire a therapist to supervise their Gerson therapy. While this blog cannot be replacement for professional advice, it can at least provide some guidance to those that needs it. My only consolation is that some of the second group readers commented that this blog gave them some hope.

I also share some of my frustrations, emotions and dark thoughts in the hope that people with cancer would not bury such thoughts and deal with it. Suppressed toxic emotions are one of the key factor that causes cancer. Many chose to ignore it but it does not mean it is not there. It's just denial. This is also to let them know that these experiences are not unique to them and that it is possible to manage them. How they chose to deal with them is entirely up to them.

Along the way, this blog also attracted a third group of general audience, who may find it less relevant to them. This blog is like a healing journal, boring to read. It is my hope that one of the message that I want to give to the general audience is that the cancer journey is a difficult one. As such change your lifestyle while you still can as prevention is better than cure. I really hope no one gets cancer.

Rhus Verniciflua Stokes (aRVS) Update
I am amazed at the promptness of reply of Mr. Lee Sook Yung of Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea. He wants me do another CT scan to see my current condition and medical records before he can decide if the treatment is suitable for me. After all the hype and even before I have been accepted, there is one consideration that I have to take into now.

I have asked him for the approximate costs of the treatment and he said it will be between US$3K-US$4K per month. Furthermore, I will have to go to Korea and be admitted to the clinic for treatment. That will add additional living costs as well. I am just considering 1 year treatment, it will probably add up substantially to about US$6K per month. The costs will come down if they allow me to do the therapy at home after an initial stay in Korea. Anyway, it's beyond my reach.

Mohd Shafiq Update
I have just been informed by my friend Yeong that Shafiq has been admitted to hospital on Monday night. One of the arteries on his swollen leg burst and he was crying in pain. The bleeding has been stopped and the doctors do not know what else to do for him. Shafiq has been asking to go home.

During the SS19/1 Residents' Association carnival, a total of about RM1,700 was collected, of which RM985 was from donation and the balance from sale of plants, durians and compost bins. The money has been released to Shafiq's mother. For more information and photographs of the carnival, please visit here.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Glimmer Of Hope

Yesterday as the day progressed, I was not feeling too well. My energy levels was rather low and my restless legs seems to be plaguing me all day and I had to constantly massage it. My chest felt quite congested and was starting to get nauseated. My stomach felt full, yet hungry at the same time. It was a lousy feeling.

After dinner last night, I decided to up the stakes a bit. I know there have been some blockages in the veins (near the Popliteal fossa area) just behind the knee joints. I thought why not do something to improve the blood flow? Its very painful to massage the veins and the strength of my own thumb alone was not sufficient. So I use the handle of a steel spoon to massage the veins. At certain spots, there are bubble like formations inside the veins that are creating the blockage. It was very painful to massage the little bubbles away but it did help to improve the blood flow. It will take many more massages to remove the little bubbles completely from both legs. After the massage, I went to bed at around 10.30pm and felt some improvements to my restless legs problem. For the first time in two months over, I managed to sleep by 11pm.

Rhus Verniciflua Stokes (aRVS) Update
I contacted Mr. Lee Sook Yung of Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea by email on Monday and got a prompt respond from him the next day. He said that the aRVS extract is not a commercial drug yet, it is prescribed only in the clinic of his hospital. He has requested me for more detail information about my cancer and history.

I have since replied him by attaching my radiologist report and blood test for his appraisal.

A little more information about this alternative treatment when compared to conventional treatment. Traditional Korean Cancer Treatment perceives cancer as a whole body environmental disease; treats the physical, emotional, and spiritual environment of a patient, which was considered as causes of cancer to the patient. The treatment includes Traditional Korean herbs and acupuncture, control the balance between Qi-Blood and organs.

Rhus Verniciflua Stokes (picture), namely lacquer tree, grows wild in East Asia including China, Japan, and Korea. Its wood and sap have been used in various purposes. As a oriental medicinal herb, its character is reported to be warm, its taste is hot, and it contains toxin. It has effects of breaking blood clots and expelling stasis; resolving accumulation; killing worms, so it has been used in resolving the mass made from static blood, aggregation-accumulation, and rocky mass/cancer. However its medical use has been limited, because of its resinous phenolic compound, urushiol, which can cause severe allergic dermatitis in some individuals.

Rhus Verniciflua Stokes shows anti-cancer effect in Lewis lung carcinoma cell, osteosarcoma, breast cancer cell, ovarian cancer cell, lymphoma, and hepatic cell. Anti-cancer and anti-oxidant effects are reported due to its flavonids, such as butein, fisetin, fustin, and sulfuretin from Rhus Verniciflua, Rhus Verniciflua inhibits migration activity in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC), which is stimulated by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF).

The majority (75-85%) of Renal Cell Carcinoma(RCC) exhibits clear cell histology and often presents with metastatic diseases (picture shows a right radical nephrectomy of 12cm kidney tumor mass). The most common sites of metastatic disease are the lungs (20-30%), and unresectable lung metastatic disease is associated with a poor outcome. Five-year survival rate of RCC with metastatic disease is reported to be 0-5%, and its response rate to chemotherapy is only 4-6%. Metastatic RCC is sensitive to immunotherapy, but its response rate is only 10-20%. Substantial toxicity of immunotherapy occurs with high-dose Interleukin-2 (IL-2), lfa-interferon (α-IFN), or combination of low dose IL-2 plus α-IFN, and impact of immunotherapy is limited in increasing survival period. Recently signal ransduction inhibitors are introduced and especially tyrosin kinase inhibitors such as sunitinib(Sutent®) and sorafenib(Nexavar®) are used for the treatment of RCC. Objective response rate of sunitinib in two phase II trials are 25.5 % (95% CI, 17.5-34.9) and 36.5% (95% CI, 24.7-49.6) retrospectively, which is higher than those of cytokines. However, its times of progression is limited to 11 months and its impact on overall survival has not reported yet.

A patient with RCC with multiple lung metastases showed nearly complete response after treated with Traditional Korean Cancer Treatment including Rhus Verniciflua Stokes Extracts. This result indicates that Traditional Korean Cancer Treatment could maintain the quality of life who has cancer without significant adverse reaction. This case presents that Traditional Korean Cancer Treatment may be a promising alternative for the management of unresectable RCC with multiple lung metastases.

Although they have reported two successful RCC treatment cases, this is still far better than no successes from my 7 specialist doctors from 6 different hospitals in two countries. There are no guarantees, only a glimmer of hope.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Where To Get Sabah Snake Grass (SSG)

I just noticed that my post on 25th May attracted 23 comments. The bulk of the new comments were posted in June 2011 were asking where to get SSG.

Dear readers, I normally do not look at past comments, especially if they are more than 1 week old. So, your request to me to ask where to get SSG would be left unanswered. In future, please leave your comment in the current post, even though the post may not be related to SSG. That way, I know. Alternatively, please contact me by email which you can get from my profile.

Many readers has been asking me for Mr. Ng's phone number. Mr. Ng grows the SSG in his own garden and gives away for free to cancer patients as part of his community service. He is now supporting 40+ cancer patients. More people are contacting him each day. I just spoke to him last night and was informed that he has run out of stocks of SSG. He has requested me not to release his phone number for the moment as he cannot entertain new patients. Please stayed tuned for I will give an update when he has sufficient stock. He says he is working with some people to grow more.

In the meantime, you can buy from Mr. Tiang in Jelebu, Negeri Sembilan. You can contact him at +60196609502. Mr. Tiang also sells SSG plants. It's worth your while to drive there. Please go and buy the plants. Please note that there is a shortage of SSG in the market now. To ensure your own long term supply, please plant your own. Just cut a branch and plant it in the soil. It will grow and you can get your first harvest in 5 weeks. You can grow the plants on pots, so people living in flats, apartments and condos can also plant them.

I got this information from another blog dated 14 July. A person by the name of Andrew said he has huge quantity of SSG for sale. Delivery can be arranged. Interested parties please contact him at

Any readers who has SSG for sale or to give away for free, please contact me so that I can include your name in this listing. I have no commercial interest whatsoever from any sale. I am doing it as part of my community service.

In the Mood for Love

It's a daily affair now that I have to stay up and massage my pair of legs in middle of the night till about 2am. Part of the reason is that I am not sleepy. I have tried to get up earlier in the morning with the hope that I will become sleepy by 11pm but so far, no luck. Two likely reasons for my restless legs are lack of magnesium and also my anemic condition. I have been taking plant based iron, calcium and magnesium supplements for a while now. While my sleeping problem has been resolved somewhat, my restless legs still persist and seems to be getting worst. I did a blood test yesterday and will have to wait for the results to know about my condition. I am thinking of increasing my daily magnesium intake.

Last night, I decided to go for foot reflexology to see if it can help my restless leg problem. I met the operator of the center and he told me I looked terrible, almost half my previous size. I last saw him 8 months ago. While he may have exaggerated my size a bit, what he said about my face was true. Pale and thin flesh on my cheeks like a person who is suffering from malnutrition. Sigh. I have been eating a lot but I am not gaining weight.

During the foot massage, I could not help but think what my oncologist in Singapore said of my condition last September 2010, slow progressing. My current therapy is helping me lead a good quality of life but not good enough. Bit by bit my condition is deteriorating but at least that is better than any of the conventional treatment. If I had taken the conventional treatment as recommended by my oncologist and urologist, I would have died 18 months back. My oncologist have given me an open date 1 year appointment but I don't think I will want to visit him in Singapore because I am not taking any conventional treatment, even if my condition deteriorates. I will be better off with my existing therapy, at least I live longer with this therapy than if I take conventional treatment. Convention treatment offer at best 1 year extension of life.

I am also running into a wall with the herb Rhus verniciflua Stokes (aRVS) extract as the patent holder in Korea did not reply to my email. I also could not find anywhere on the Internet that offer for sale of the extract. It's my best hope to date as clinical test on two kidney cancer cases were a success. I will continue to search. Meanwhile, I will explore another Ginseng herb extract, Careseng which has shown good clinical trial results but no information about kidney cancer cases. I will email my radiologist's report and see what their doctors in Taiwan says about my kidney cancer.

Support UNICEF China
Yesterday, I was watched a very moving documentary program about UNICEF Hong Kong Ambassadors' visit raises funds for programmes in remote Liangshan prefecture, a remote area of China's Sichuan Province.

According to official statistics, around 30 per cent of the rural population in Liangshan is struggling below the national rural poverty line. Deep-rooted difficulties – including poor access to health services, low awareness of hospital deliveries, under-equipped health facilities and shortages of qualified health providers – combine to imperil the survival and well-being of the children and women living here.

A devastating earthquake measuring 8.0 on the Richter Scale struck southwest China's Sichuan Province on 12 May, 2008, and since then they still have not recovered. They really need our support. Yet with as little as RM50 (US$17) a month, about 5-6 children's life will improve drastically.

Compared to my cancer, I think they live in worst conditions that me, suffered more than me physically and emotionally.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Beautiful Sunday

This morning, I went to the SS19/1 Residents' Association carnival at 7.30am to take my blood test. After that I went home to do my enema, juicing and breakfast and then went back again to the carnival. The turn was quite good and the popular stalls are of course food stalls. Nice and delicious food but not for me. Sigh...

I met some friends there and chatted for a while. One of them asked me why I "wack" one of the anonymous reader's comments on yesterday's post. I believe the anonymous reader is either a TCM practitioner or have good knowledge about TCM and also about cancer therapies. He or she chose to remain anonymous, not even choosing a pseudonym. I do feel strongly about such knowledgeable people offering suggestions without first understanding the patient. I know he or she was trying to help and meant well and I should be more understanding. True, people do not owe me any duty to help or even suggest any therapies I should take. Perhaps, I should have just ignored his or her comments which I normally do but now that he or she mentioned it, I think it would be good for him or her to know what my feedback would be. I felt that there was lack of empathy in his or her approach. It just reminded me of some of the doctors that I met and some stories about doctors and alternative therapists that I learned from other cancer patients or caregives that I met. They are trying to treat the cancer but not the patient and have no consideration for the feelings of the patient. I am not saying I don't appreciate help or that you don't offer help, but please have some regards for the feeling of the patient, in this case me. Again, maybe I have over reacted.

Yesterday evening, while waiting for my transportation to my TCM class, I was talking to my mechanic. He told me that his partner had just died of nose cancer. The patient was bed ridden and the cancer has spread all over his body including his brain as well. The doctors recommended that the patient be discharged and spend his final days at home with the family. About two weeks prior to his death, the family was introduced to a TCM practitioner from China who confidently said, he can cure the patient. He started his therapy and of course, the patient did not respond. He then instructed the patient's son to do an MRI on the patient to confirm that it has spread to the brain and against the advice of the hospital doctors that it would be a waste of time and money to do. Anyway, the TCM practitioner got his MRI and then said to the son, since the tumor has spread to his brain, he could not do anything more! He conveniently disappeared from the scene. Forget about the money that he made but what kind of TCM practitioner is this? Isn't there a code of ethics and consideration for patient and his family?

Solamargine Therapy
I mentioned about some new alternative therapies that were clinically tested and showed good potential on Friday's post. One of them is Solamargine, a product from Taiwan.

One of my friend, Liz will be starting the Solamargine therapy for a trial period of one month. She just received the product from Taiwan on Wednesday. You can also follow her progress here. I hope and pray that she will recover with that therapy which has shown good results for many lung cancers patients.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

If I Only Could

This morning, I will be continuing my qigong therapy. This involves the block breathing exercises following by traditional Chinese cupping on my back to improve blood circulation. It's too soon to tell of any improvement because today will be my 2nd treatment only. In my case, I will need a lot more treatments.

Yesterday, a friend was talking to me about how important the mind is in healing. She was referring to an article published in a newspaper about the placebo effect. A placebo effect is a cure in the mind. Belief is powerful medicine, even if the treatment itself is a sham. New research shows placebos can also benefit patients who do not have faith in them. A cancer of the lymph nodes patient was dying but was given a new anticancer drug called Krebiozen (which was a placebo) that he felt confident would cure him according to a 1957 report by psychologist Bruno Klopfer of the University of California, Los Angeles, entitled “Psychological Variables in Human Cancer.” Within three days later he was cheerfully ambling around the unit, joking with the nurses. His tumors had shrunk by half, and after 10 more days of treatment he was discharged from the hospital. And yet the other patients in the hospital who had received Krebiozen showed no improvement.

Perhaps, this may be why some cancer patients are willing to try new therapies. My mind is not that strong and for me, after reading some new therapy that is adequately supported by studies, my mind may be convinced that the new therapy is going to be a cure. Placebo effects can arise not only from a conscious belief in a drug but also from subconscious associations between recovery and the experience of being treated—from the pinch of a shot to a doctor’s white coat. Such subliminal conditioning can control bodily processes of which we are unaware, such as immune responses and the release of hormones. So, subconsciously I am riding on the new therapy that would strengthen my mind many folds which otherwise would not be able to achieve by itself.

Gerson Therapy News
I received the latest Jul/Aug 2011 Newsletter from Gerson Institute and would like share some details of cancer patients that went to Gerson Clinic in Mexico for treatment.

A total of 516 patients attended the Gerson clinic in Mexico between 2007-2010: 187 males and 329 females. As you can see in the graph above, the most prevalent cancer was breast cancer, with 122 patients. The next most common was 39 with pancreatic cancer, 34 with prostate cancer, 33 with melanoma, 30 with colon cancer, 33 with lung cancer and 14 with liver cancer. It should be noted that the clinic takes many stage III and IV advanced cancer cases.

The following are the results to date: 194 of the 516 patients are deceased. We lost contact with or could not reach 211 of the remaining 322 patients. This leaves 111 people who are active in our Follow-Up Program and are still following the Gerson Therapy. Forty-seven of them report their status as Very Good (improving), 51 report their status as Good (stable) and 13 report their status as Poor (declining).

It is too soon to determine the final health outcomes of patients since we need to follow them for five years and obtain copies of medical records to verify their health status.

SS19/1 Residents' Association Carnival
I would like to invite readers living in Subang Jaya, USJ and nearby areas to come and support the SS19/1 Residents' Association Carnival on Sunday 17th July at Jalan SS19/1 (7am to 12noon). My friend Yeong and his wife Khadijah will be operating a booth selling plants. There are 9 pots of Sabah Snake Grass for sale. All plants are priced at RM5 each. All proceeds of the sale goes to the Mohd. Shafiq fund. Please come out and support generously.

There will be a health march from 7.00 8.00am to 8.30 9.00am. A path lab has also offered discounts for 58 parameters blood screening for RM65 (normal price: RM176). They are also offering an additional of 3 tumors markers test for men and 4 for women for an additional fee of RM55 and RM60 respectively. I will be there and hope to see you too.

Friday, July 15, 2011

More Good News

This morning I woke up late again at 10.30am. I forgot to set the alarm and I had an appointment with a health consultant meeting at 10am. Luckily the health consultant was late and arrived at 11am. I will talk about this health supplement a little bit later. Last night, I could not sleep and was tossing and turning in bed at about 2am. My "floating" legs were giving me problems again. I tried massaging it but it did not help. So I got up and went downstairs to continue my leg massage. My mother who was also awake for night urine offered to help me massage my legs. She applied some ointment to promote blood blow and hand massage my legs which was followed by a machine massage. After about 15 minutes, I went back to bed and was able to sleep.

New Cancer Products
The health consultant was recommended by my former insurance agent. She was the insurance agent for the insurance company where I worked in my pre-cancer days. She told me that this supplement has good potential and that I should at least listen to what the health consultant said. So, I agreed to meet her. Se told me her health product is manufactured in Canada and now being promoted by a Taiwanese company. She is the local distributor of the product. She said the product is a ginseng extract has shown good potential in clinical trials and many cancer patients has shown good response in Canada. In Malaysia, she has now 30 patients and all her patients (after conventional medication failed) have responded well. She gave me some links and I will have to do a bit more reading.

At this juncture, I feel there is no harm in trying to get more information about this product. I have agreed to release my radiologist report to her so that she can forward it to a professor/doctor at her Head Office in Taiwan for an assessment if the product would be useful for my kidney cancer (a requirement before patient is allowed to start therapy). For the past three weeks, I have been reading up on some other cancer supplements and all of them showed potential, supported by clinical trials. All of them have claimed to have successfully treated some cancer patients. Some of these products include XP-180, Solamargine, K101 and now Careseng. XP-180 costs about RM15K (US$5K) for a month's supply while Solamargine and K101 costs just under RM5K (US$1.7K) per month. Careseng now gives cancer patients 50% discount and a month's supply costs about RM1.6K (US$535). Careseng's main treatment protocol is only for 3 months after which the cancer patient reverts to a maintenance mode therapy that costs about RM400 (US$133) per month. K101 works on similar treatment protocol, a primary treatment period followed by a maintenance treatment program costing under RM500 (US$166).

I will work with the health consultant to get more information about the 30 cancer patients that are taking the Careseng supplement so that we can have an idea what type of cancers were successfully treated. I will provide an update when available.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Let It Flow

My friend loaned me a Hindi movie called 3 Idots. I don't understand Hindi of course, so I depended on the English subtitles. It's a comedy, love, friendship, self discovery and being true to oneself all rolled into one and it's about 3 guys studying Engineering in a college and their misadventures. It also boasts of beautiful sceneries, a very pretty female lead, Kareena Kapoor, good acting, continuous action and I would highly recommend this touching 2hrs 45mins movie.

There is one scene in the movie, after watching reminds me of my cancer journey. A student was doing his final year project and he wanted to build a miniature helicopter powered with four vertical propellers. Not only has he to make the machine fly, but have all the propellers synchronized as well which is not an easy project. He asked his professor for an extension of time to complete his project but of course was flatly declined by his professor. He felt he was so close to the completion but was very dejected after being refused extension of time. Later he hang himself in his room with the words "I QUIT". There is much more to what I described to make the scene pitiful.

I felt very sad seeing that scene. Many of us cancer patients treat our cancer as a fight, a war that only one of us will survive. So we focus our attention to remove the tumors without caring for ourself as a person. A friend once said of me that my cancer fight is a project, the therapies are just tasks with milestones to meet. So when the results are not there, more pressure and tasks (therapies in my case) are added so that the project is completed in time. In my case, complete here means my cancer is in remission.

There is no compassion for the own body, everything is reduced to a fight or task to attack the tumors. The healing process are reduced to inanimate objects such as tasks to be completed. No results creates stress and doubts. Like in many difficult projects, it can be abandoned. There are so many times I thought of quitting. It's the easiest way out. I realised this is a wrong way to deal with cancer. Healing the body takes time and it take more than just tasks (physical therapies) to get oneself healed. Putting deadlines on when the body gets healed is like setting your own time bomb.

In my early days of the therapy, I get encouraged by reading testimonials on how soon the therapy heals. That become a yardstick and when my time came, I did not get healed, I became dejected. My mind started to have doubts and suddenly, everything became difficult to do. I have since learned that each of us are different. Promotional literature will use the best case scenario to inspire hope, at least it is humanely possible to defeat cancer. But it is also a danger because such accounts are often simplisitic. I also hear of people that adopt similar diet and did not survive! More importantly, I learned not to treat my body like a machine that will respond and react to predefined settings. It does not work that way and one need not panic if the reactions are different from that documented. I also believe there is no use to continue to measure progress too frequently because such reports are temporary and the body situation is very fluid and changes rapidly. Everytime a report is out, I would feel dejected when the results are negative and feel good when the results showed improvement. Yet, overtime, I noted that the results are not consistent, sometimes good and sometimes not so good. I personally heard one case where a women was talking to the therapist over the phone that she wanted to quit alternative therapy and do conventional treatment after her cancer marker shot up. Why allow myself to such torture? So instead, allow the body time and space to heal. Don't panic on the first sign of trouble or when things don't seem to work.

Desperation do set in and that's when I do stupid things. Now I am more composed and aware. I just do the best I can, no milestones or deadlines, whatever that come naturally.

New Way Of Using Sabah Snake Grass
Recently, I received some information about an alternative cancer therapy and also Sabah Snake Grass(SSG) written by a layperson based on the experience of a cancer patient with a Naturopathic Consultant. I am not trying to discredit any person but just to raise awareness.

According to a Naturopathic Consultant, the SSG is not to be taken too often, because of its “cooling” properties which will weaken the lung.

The Consultant suggested boiling the SSG (50g) with brown sugar, Huanglian or Rhizoma Coptids (20g) and Jinyinhua or Flos Lonicerae(50g). The brown sugar will counteract the “cooling” properties of the herb, Huanglian and Jinyinhua have powerful detoxification properties. Even then, it should only be taken not more than 2 times a week.

In any case, only SSG that grow in the wild (wet land area) have the efficacy. I am not sure about this claim but according to many home grown SSG users, they have seen good progress in cancer patients.

According to my TCM notes, Huanglian or Rhizoma Coptids is bitter and cold in nature attributive to the heart, liver, stomach and large intestine meridians. It's actions are to clear away heat and dampness. Jinyinhua or Flos Lonicerae is sweet in flavor and cold in nature. It's action are to clear away heat, relieve toxins and eliminate summer heat. Both the herbs are cold (more than just cooling) and I wonder if adding it to SSG which itself is also cooling in nature, would it not make the decoction even more cooling? I will have to seek confirmation with my TCM lecturer.

I have been receiving quite a lot of emails about where to source for SSG. Apparently, according to one reader, there is now a shortage of SSG in the Klang Valley area. I would suggest to SSG users, please try and grow your own SSG. It's very easy to grow. Just cut any SSG branches and plant in in the soil. You can get your first harvest within 5 weeks.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

It Takes Time

This morning, my alarm woke up at 8.30am but I was still feeling very sleepy and decided to continue to sleep. The more I slept, the sleepier I became and finally decided to wake up at about 11am. The reason why I woke up late was because I slept late. I did try to sleep earlier, but I was not sleepy. Also everytime, I lie down to sleep, my legs would feel "floating". Then I would have to massage and exercise the legs.

At the moment, most of the action is around my chest area. Like this morning, my phlegm is stained with blood. Besides having lung congestion, there are some pain here and there. Luckily there was no cough.

Iron In Diet
I did further reading about lack of Iron and for more serious cases, restless legs is also one of the symptoms.

A fact of life is the inorganic iron in the diet. It is found on the label of many or most prepared foods, generally as reduced iron, indicating the reduced, or ferrous, state as opposed to the oxidized, or ferric state. In many multinutritional supplements, and is routinely prescribed for patients who test, or appear anemic, presumably to counter the so-called iron-deficient anemia. It is know that the various ferrous salts - namely, the sulfate, gluconate, fumarate, succinate and also others, acts against iron-deficiency anemia but it's toxic effects are also acknowledged. It should be emphasized that that iron-deficiency anemia is different from vitamin b-12 and folic-acid-deficient anemia or pernicious anemia.

The Physicians' Desk Reference classifies inorganic ferrous sulfate as being toxic, but it is the iron source most commonly added to dietary supplements. Further, it is doubtful if inorganic iron actually corrects iron-deficiency anemia, and its poisonous nature ensures diarrhea as the body tries to rid itself of the toxin. The ubiquitous use of ferrous sulfate and other ferrous salts in multivitamins and enriched flour remains unfathomable, except maybe that this is an easy and profitable way to get rid of the stuff, a by-product from, say, sulfuric acid manufactured based on iron sulfide.

Many iron supplements given to cancer patients are inorganic form. Accordingly, if a patient is ever able to overcome the anemia, it will be in other ways, for example, from natural foods containing organic iron, a little bit at a time.

References: Cancer And The Search For Selective Biochemnical Inhibitors, E.J. Hoffman.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Hazey Days

Although I am now sleeping better now but on most days, I sleep very late. I am back to the days when I took the Low Dose Naltrexone medication where I only managed to sleep about 2am. I hope slowly, my body will able to adjust and sleep well before 12 midnight.

I am still wondering why my legs feel energyless? I have started on the plant based iron, magnesium and calcium supplementation. Currently, massaging it helps.

With the haze (picture from theStar) coming back, I think I am having a little bit of breathing problems. At times, I breath heavily. If it continues, I may have to resort to my personal oxygen generator to help out. The congestion in my lungs have not cleared yet, so I am having this uncomfortable feeling around my chest area. There are blood in my phlegm. I am also experienced some pain around my chest and right kidney area. Some twitching and nibbling pain here and there. I would normally stroke my fingers over the affected areas to pacify it.

An Apology
Some two weeks ago, I wrote about my first day experience at a local qigong group of an international qigong association. I have received some feedback and noted that some people have taken it out of context. I think it's appropriate that I make some clarification.

It is common that each individual instructor has his or her own way of teaching students. In that case, my instructor was strict in his methods and I think that has to do with his passion and love for qigong. Obviously, as a newbee, I have reacted strongly and was insensitive to blog about it.

In my pre-cancer days, my gym instructor would always remind me "No Pain No Gain" and would always push me to do a little bit more. So when I first started the block breathing exercises on the very first day, I was pushing myself a bit more which should not be the case. I was impatient, wanted immediate improvements.

Subsequently, I have met the qigong Master a week later and he has advised me to do block breathing exercise only as it is highly beneficial for cancer patients like me as block breathing exercise would allow more oxygen into the body. The key is optimal rather than maximum.

In any case, I would like to tender my apology to both the instructor and to the qigong association.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Starting Month 23

Bit by bit, I am inching to my 2nd anniversary on September 11. Today, as I begin my month 23, it feels good to be alive. The journey back to good health is still in progress and there is still much work to be done.

I will savour each moment of each day. Rejoice in all moments of the day. Live a joyful life.

Meanwhile, I will just lie back and enjoy the rest of the day. A song for you:

The Game, by Crematory

Your life defined by many lies
You dwell in your own words
Distant from all that's real
Gaze into the mirror
And behold the Face of a player

A game of life - the game of life
A game with your life - the game
A game of life - the game of life
A game with your life - the game of life

In some situations once so common
And then disappointed stabbed those
That once aided you in the back
Seeking truth in a glass

Aggressive and disappointed
You roam through life
Tossing away
Your whole future for a
Small illusion in your head

Sunday, July 10, 2011

A Dark Tale

Today, I will share with you a dark topic, some of the things that cross my mind. The topic is about "preparing for death". Many times when I discuss it with my friends, I would often hear my friends say even us as normal people, we do not know if we will live tomorrow, die in an accident, die of heart attack, all the untimely deaths. I am sure such events can happen but you will not be able to connect your feelings to such events, in order words, you won't feel any pain when you talk about it. It's just talk because the chance of it happening is remote.

For a cancer patient, I believe it's different. No matter how positive I am, I cannot be 100% positive during all my waking hours. I can achieve 70%-80% positivity and I think that's quite good for me. No matter how much hope I feel about my chances about recovery, there is still an element of doubt. Therein lies the fear of death, an unresolved feeling. You can try to keep yourself busy with doing this or that but that does not change anything. There are still unresolved business. For me, I prefer to deal with it. Of course, there is a danger that one can get carried away with such negativity and get really depressed.

Before I start, please know that I have no wish to end my life, give up my therapy or do anything to harm myself or my hopes of recovery. I realised that "preparing for death" is not a single event that you think about it and it gets accepted and then you don't think about it anymore. What happens is that every time you think about it, a certain feeling of acceptability of death is achieved. Of course, I do get emotional during the process and shed a tear or two. There are so much attachment to the family, parents, brothers and sisters, material possessions, achievements, things you have not done, unsettle personal matters and whole lot of other stuffs that it is too pitiful to just die, especially when it's at a young age. The crying indicates there are still attachments.

So, this dying process repeat itself every now and then. For me, even after 22 months, I am still far away from full acceptance. What I noticed is that as time goes along and as the more I resolve with that part of the feeling, the more acceptance I get and the less tears I shed. I think when the day comes when I don't shed a tear, it would mean I am fully prepared for death. What that time happen, it does not mean I just drop dead. It's just that I have resolved some important unsettled matters, unloaded the materialistic baggage and loaded myself spiritually. It's a time where I can die without regret so to speak, if death do come anytime. It's not an easy goal but it's something I am working on everyday.

I think there is also a positive side to this as well. I think by working on my unresolved matters, I am also cleaning myself of not only toxic emotions but to live life freely, learning how to unload the materialistic part and seeking spiritual development that would enhance my healing. Perhaps, the full acceptance of death would also mean full recovery.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

A New Hope For Everyone

After a few days of resting, I started to feel much better. The past week or so, I have been getting a little back pain after I wake up. I am not sure if this is due to my sleeping position (sleeping one side). Only complain left is probably my lung congestion. Something don't feel quite right in my lungs.

Dear fellow Malaysians, today is CLEANing day! Tie a yellow ribbon on your garden tree.

There's no FATE but what we walk. John Connor, Terminator 2

Of Friends
I received an email about an old fisherman from a friend. It was an inspiring story. I thought I would just share the ending part.

The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.'

Friends are very special. They make you smile & encourage you to succeed. They lend an ear & they share a word of praise. Show your friends how much you care.

On very rare occasions, you are also blessed with a gem, a friend that take the extra mile to show you your true self. No gift is more precious than the gift of awakening.

Potential Alternative Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney cancer) Therapy
Yesterday, thanks to a reader KM, who commented that Rhus verniciflua Stokes could be a potential option for treatment of metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Two cases were presented of which I am happy to note because this is the first time I read about successful treatment of RCC using alternative therapy. Both patients have undergone radical nephrectomy of one kidney, one patient took Sunitinib (Sutent, Pfizer) but his condition became worst. Other than that, they have refused further conventional treatment. One of the patient has similar lung metastasis like me. Although my tumors are much larger in size and I did not undergo radical nephrectomy, I think the Rhus verniciflua Stokes (aRVS) extract holds a new hope for me too.

The question now is where do I obtain the Rhus verniciflua Stokes (aRVS) extract? After some searching on the Internet, I wrote to the Korean company, AZI Co., Ltd. which holds the patent for "Preparing Extract From Rhus Verniciflua Stokes" for more information.

Another Alternative Cancer Therapy
Many well meaning friends have continued to email and inform me about new cancer therapies. This cancer therapy was given to me by a health trainer, Mei Yong. She has also been very kind to translate the documentation from Mandarin into English. This product is not a MLM product and I think they have priced it reasonable enough to reach wider patients. Apparently, it's now undergoing Phase 3 clinical trial.

This cancer therapy hold promise for lung cancers. The product contains Solamargine Purified extracted from Solanum incanum Chinese Herb that triggers gene expression of human TNFR I which may lead to cell apoptosis. This is the world's first "Nano Chinese Herbs that activates the mechanism of gene regulation of the natural apoptosis of cancer cells." The discovery was also published in the Federation of European Biochemical Societies in 2004 under the title "Action of solamargine on human lung cancer cells - enhancement of the susceptibility of cancer cells."

Cancer cells dying rapidly within 1 to 8 hours after using the product

I can say, the evidence presented are impressive. I also happen to know a stage 4 lung cancer friend is going to try out the product. I will follow-up closely with her progress because this product also hold promise for many other lung cancer patients and also for me.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Tiredness Has Me in Its Grip

Yesterday was a tiring day for me. I spent most of my time resting. My friend Yeong called me and upon hearing my voice said I sounded different and wondered if I am all right. He called to tell me that he has two books on Vibrational Medicine and wondered if I want to borrow it for reading. My coughing has almost stopped after taking the TCM pills. It was a relief because I was not able to sleep because of the constant coughing. My legs are still giving me problems. When I lie down, I feel that my legs are "floating", devoid of energy. The feet is cold and I think the blood flow could not reach my feet. Even in a sitting position, my feet now feels cold. This coming week, I will be going for another blood test.

This morning, I woke up to a little headache. My chest still feels congested. My voice is still a little coarse and the throat gets irritated easily. Although there is no pain in my coughs, but I am finding it a little difficult to cough, there not enough energy to push. When I try to do deep breathing, there is a little pain in my chest. My energy levels are still low and I am tired. I have not taken my weight for quite sometime but from feedback of two of my friends that I have not seen for last six months, I have grown thinner. It's not that I have not been eating but I just could not put on weight. There are so many "stills".

I have a few areas that I want to work with my hypnotherapist and she has suggested an alternative place where I can do the therapy nearer to my home. That's really nice of her and it would help very much because I would be meeting her more regularly. I will also discuss with her about my anemic problem, such as treatment options as she is also a qualified medical doctor. I am losing a small of blood everyday because of my kidney tumor.

I was wondering what underlying principles are vibrational medicine based on, and as I started reading the book Vibrational Medicine, The #1 Handbook of Subtle-Energy Therapies by Richard Gerber, M.D., I was pleasantly surprise to learn that it has its roots in Einsteinnian paradigm. The Einsteinnian paradigm as applied to vibrational medicine sees human beings as networks of complex energy fields that interface with physical/cellular systems.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Shade Of Grey

Yesterday, I was rather tired. It must have been the traveling that I have done the day before. My coughing was really bad, especially towards the night. Ginger tea is no longer able to help and I needed something more potent. I bought some over the counter TCM pills called Zhui Feng Su He Wan and after taking it twice, the cough subsided. I was able to sleep better.

My chest is really congested. I also find it difficult to cough, there is just not enough energy to push the phlegm out. My voice has also become a little coarse, in addition its also devoid of energy. This morning, after a night's rests, I thought I would be more energetic but I still feel tired. I have made an appointment with my hypnotherapist for a therapy session this afternoon. I think I will have to postpone it to next week as I don't feel like having enough energy to drive to her clinic in downtown Kuala Lumpur. My legs also feel weak. I think I will spent the afternoon resting instead.

Cruelty of Mankind
I thought I make this update after I received a SMS from a friend who said she watched a video shared on Facebook of 5 to 6 live cows being thrown into a big crusher while still alive to make burger meat. She can't watch the video and said it's really heart wrenching.

Has mankind lost it's human values in the quest for profits? I just hope the authorities or Animal Rights Group trace the source of the video and bring the perpetrators to justice.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A Different Approach

My drive to Ipoh in the morning took almost 2.5 hours and I only made a brief stop. The traffic was heavy as I entered the highway but became lighter as I drove up North past Rawang. By the time I entered the State of Perak stretch of the highway, I was already receiving flash signals from cars in opposite direction that there will be a speed trap ahead. So, many of the cars (speeding at more than 110kph) slowed down and I also lost speed. After traveling more than 30kms, I still could not see the speed trap. The traffic police did setup the speed trap (on both sides of the highway) just before the Bidor exit but business was bad. Saw only one car being booked traveling up North but South bound traffic was not so fortunate, many cars were booked.

Met my holistic doctor in the afternoon. His clinic also doubles as an Acupuncture Academy and he also gives six months short courses on Acupuncture, Iridology, Vibration Medicine and Herbal Medicine. He had me take the Quantum Magnetic Resonance Analyzer test. You can read more about the analyzer here. The main analysis items are over 30, including cardiovascular and cerebrovascular condition, bone mineral density, trace elements, blood lead, rheumatism, lung and respiratory tract, nephropathy, blood sugar, stomach and intestines, liver and gall, cranial nerves, gynecology, prostate, bone disease, the trace elements of selenium, iron, zinc and calcium, etc. Overall, the results of my reading was good, including my lungs!

Besides the analyzer, he also uses iridology and vibrational techniques to diagnose my condition. He also did a character analysis and I must admit what he said about me was almost similar to the traits of the cancer personality. But he also revealed a very specific emotional condition in me. From there, he then recommended me 8 different type of herbs (of which 3 are vibrational herbs) to take for a month. Most of the herbs are of his own formulation. Basically, two of the herbs will have a laxative effect to clear my large intestines while the remainder are tonifying to strengthening the various organs in the body. It's supposed to complement my existing therapy.

By the time I finished the consulting, I was a bit tired. I called my friend and retired to his home to rest. I have not met him for a long time and we chatted for about 4 hours, I took a bath and then drove home. I find driving at early evenings on the highways quite pleasant. The weather is cooler and I am not sleepy. I took a leisurely 3hrs drive for the 220kms distance with a dinner and refueling stops in between. Traffic was light, and best of all no speed trap! However, I was coughing all the way. Whitish sputum, in TCM, a reflection that the body is too cooling. Took ginger tea while driving but it did not help very much.

After I completed my night enema at 11.30pm, I took my oatmeal supper and went to bed. I could not sleep because I continued to cough and finally got up at 1.30am to make some very strong ginger tea. Surprising, after walking the whole day, my pair of legs did not feel restless.

Vibrational Medicine And Iridology
According to Wikipedia, vibrational medicine is an alternative therapy based on the belief that illness is caused by energy imbalances. The concept is based on the premise that human bodies are made up of interconnected fields of putative (not empirically observable) energy and that when a human body is not well that it is the result of one or more of these fields of energy being unbalanced and that the re-balancing of these esoteric energies will help to re-establish a person's good health.

Iridology (also known as iridodiagnosis) is an alternative medicine technique whose proponents believe that patterns, colors, and other characteristics of the iris can be examined to determine information about a patient's systemic health. Practitioners match their observations to iris charts, which divide the iris into zones that correspond to specific parts of the human body. Iridologists see the eyes as "windows" into the body's state of health.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Traveling Outstation

Today, I will be traveling to Ipoh to meet my holistic doctor in the morning and will be back only in the evening. I will be meeting some friends to chat and to rest before driving back. So , I will not be posting any updates today.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Myanmar Education Centre in Pudu Ulu, Cheras

I came across this Myanmar Education Centre this week in one of Book Haven's quest to set up mini-Libraries in under-privileged homes.

- The name of the Centre is Dai Victoria Education Centre (Dai Community In Malaysia)
- There are 50 students in the Centre - ages 4 to 17.
- They have 5 full time teachers and 2 part time teachers - all Myanmar citizens
- School hours are 10:00am to 3:00pm and 5 days in a week, Mondays to Fridays.

What they need!
Anyone have any 2nd Hand or Used Items lying idle, do let me know!

1. Water Filter
2. Computer
3. Printer
4. Refrigerator
5. Guitar
6. Dictionary (Oxford)
7. Whiteboard ( One Whiteboard provided, need one more)
8. Whiteboard Marker Pens (20 pieces)
9. Exercise Books (50 copies) - provided!
10. Rice for Teachers (7 teachers)
11. 3 x Stand Fans (Donated RM210 to purchase 3 Stand Fans)
12. Plastic Carpet
13. Curtain
14. 3 x Tables (Donated RM240 to purchase 3 Tables)
15 Pre-School Workbooks (for 30 children)

Jeffrey Cheah
Cell: +6012-315 2778
"It's not the years in your life but the life in your years that matters"

Up And Down

After taking for 5 days the TCM medication, my body has started to react. The medication is too cool for me. I have been coughing since Saturday evening. So I have to stop taking it. Meanwhile, I am drinking ginger tea to balance out the coolness. The cough stopped by the time I went to bed. My body is in a delicate state. Even a little too cool or warm, my body would lose its balance and I get all these reactions.

I am sleeping much better these days. Yesterday I woke up at 3am. I was feeling very hungry and went to make some oatmeal. Earlier, I went to bed without my oatmeal supper. This morning the cough came back. Got blood in phlegm again. I will need to consume a bit more ginger tea. One reader suggest that I take Cordyceps as it would help. Just learned about the herb Cordyceps two weeks ago in my TCM class. It invigorates the kidney and nourish the lungs, strengthen yang and body essence, relieve chronic cough (with blood in sputum) and dyspnea. It's also a very expensive herb and it's not easy to get genuine Cordyceps. I once watched a documentary on how the Cordyceps are harvested in the wild in Tibet. Now days, they are grown in farms and they release the Cordyceps fungus to eat the plants, get attached and die. They then harvest the Cordyceps. Apparently those Cordyceps that are harvested in the wild have better potency.

New Cancer Supplement
Yesterday, I received a SMS message from someone (I am sorry, I am not sure who) about a anti-cancer supplement. The product is called XP-180 and you can read more about it here. It looks impressive and the website also posted quite a few cancer cases of patients that were healed or improved after taking the supplement together with PET scans.

XP-180 is a microbial fermentation extract resulting from the biological activities of over 180 strains of bacteria, including Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillu s Bulgaricus , LC90-18, D’AHI and Lactobacillus gasseri ATCC, etc.

The collaborative research among The Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Italy Ferrara University, International Naturopathic Cancer Research Institute, and World Health Association of Licensed Naturopathic Medical Doctors indicate that XP-180 is significant in suppressing and killing breast cancer cells MDA-MB231, lung cancer cells A549, liver cancer SKHep-1 and Chronic Myelogenous Leukaemia K562.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Open To More Options

Yesterday, I went to consult a qigong Master to undertake some therapy. He said I am short of blood supply and did some cupping on my back to improve my blood flow. He also gave me a dietary suggestion to follow. In addition, he also wanted me to concentrate only block breathing at least three times a day as he said it would be very beneficial to me. I will also have to go back for follow-ups.

A friend who attended a health workshop and through the workshop trainer, arranged for me to meet two holistic doctors who is now participating at a Health Convention in downtown Kuala Lumpur. I met both PhD doctors during the lunch break today. Both these doctors have experiences with cancer patients and one of them is a Stage 4 breast cancer survivor. The first doctor gave me an on the spot preliminary diagnosis by looking at my pairs of hands, tongue and the eye white of both eyes. He said that there are blockages in my large intestines. He was very happy to hear that I am on Gerson therapy. I have arranged to meet him at his clinic in Ipoh this coming week for a full diagnosis and treatment plan. The other doctors said, I am fine on Gerson therapy and only suggested that I take an additional supplement from Taiwan and take a 1 day liver cleanse. Apparently her liver cleanse formula is the only one in the market that includes Omithine, an amino acids that helps you to sleep during the night and also helps your body metabolize fats. She also said those with kidney problems are not suitable for colon cleanse.

Both these doctors gave me the thumbs up! It's nice to feel good.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

East And West

Yesterday Khadijah baked some 18-carat Gold Carrot cake and gave some to me. It's really good but because it was very sweet, I can't take more than a slice a day. Later, she told me about a product called Silent Night Patch by LightWave that improves the quality of sleep. Actually, she was thinking if this patch would be useful for Mohd Shafiq because he experiencing excruciating pain to help him sleep better. I am still reading up on this expensive product.

On Thursday night, Khadijah said she was not feeling very well and she applied some ointment on her right temple as if she was applying the Silent Night Patch. Amazingly, she slept like a baby. After hearing what she said, I thought I would do the same. I bought another Eagle Brand wind medicated oil (Made in Indonesia). I applied the green colored aromatic oil on my right temple and did a quick massage. I also applied some on my nose and went to bed. Incredibly, I also slept very well, getting up only for my night urine.

This morning, I was having some difficulty in doing my morning enema. There was just too much colon spasm and I nearly could not hold. Not since I first started doing coffee enema did I experienced such strong spasm. I was doing the enema in my room and you could imagine what would happen if I discharge the solution into the room! I could not wait to complete the 15 minutes of hold and quickly went to the toilet to discharge. As expected, the enema discharge was very smelly.

TCM And Western Medicine
My friend Yeong, has been distributing TCM cancer herbs for more than 15 years. During this period of time, he has met hundreds, if not thousand of cancer patients and caregivers. The fact is 80%-90% of such cancer patients almost chose conventional medication as the first choice of treatment before considering TCM or other alternative treatments.

However, due to the increasing popularity of TCM, many patients have now opted to do conventional medicine along with TCM. However, due to the ignorance of the oncologist or specialist doctors who have no idea about TCM, the advice given to cancer patients is always not to mix TCM together with chemotherapy.

Since 1949, China has integrated TCM with Western medicine at national level. Experimental studies over the last two decades have demonstrated that Chinese medicine does have certain advantages at enhancing the immune system and reinforcing the body's ability to withstand disease and at preventing, correcting or reducing iatrogenic pain due to surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Statistical data covering recent decades indicate that 70-90% of patients undergoing radiotherapy or chemotherapy combined with internal treatment with TCM completed their course, compared to 50-70% for those undergoing these therapies without TCM treatment.

The five-year survival rate for patients given internal treatment with TCM stands at 50-60% for patients with stomach cancer (intermediate stage, postoperative) and more than 60% for patients with nasopharyngeal cancer, compared to 20-30% and 40% respectively for patients not receiving treatment with TCM. The survival rate of patients with cervical or vulval cancer, breast cancer and lung cancer increases by 5 to 10 years when combined on a long-term basis with supplementary treatment by TCM. This indicates that by combining TCM and Western medicine can improve the constitution of patients and enhance their quality of life.

Back home, in recent trends, many patients who chose to go for chemotherapy and radiotherapy are showing more acceptance toward taking TCM herbs. However, some are still reluctant after they did not get clearance from their doctors. Most who did take the herbs, did not tell their doctors. According to Yeong, the results was that those who took the TCM herbs did not suffer that much or had no side effects. This practice has been going on in China for over 50 years and just because our doctors are ignorant about the studies does not mean the patient has to continue to suffer the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Anyway, the body is yours, so you decide.

Li Peiwen et. al. 2003, Management of Cancer with Chinese Medicine, Donica Publishing

Friday, July 1, 2011

How's The Weather Today?

Yesterday evening, I slept at 7.30pm, just after my dinner. I was feeling tired and instead of waiting for my usual bedtime, I thought why not just sleep. I did not sleep continuously throughout the night and woke up in between. After a night's sleep, this morning I woke up to blue skies and everything nice. The blood stained phlegm is gone and so is the coughing. I always felt that after some good rests, the body does a remarkable recovery job, only if we allow it to.

My Zeolite enhanced coffee enema detox is good and I am still getting good results even after more than 1.5 months on the program. I am feeling very good and the energy levels are coming back slowly.

Today, I was rather busy and was out of the house most of the time. So I will just do a brief post today. I have also been asked to read about 2 new therapies. One from USA and the other from Italy. The Italian therapy seems to show quite good clinical trial results but so far they have not release much information to me. I was told, it's not a MLM product.

Say A Prayer
I have just received an email from a reader, Sondia (from Nevada, USA). This is what she wrote:
Please keep my daddy in your prayers he is in the hospital and I am scared. He is not speaking and has lost a lot of blood.

Sondia's father is also a cancer patient. Let's us all lend our hand and direct our prayers and positive thoughts to her father and we wish him a safe recovery.