Friday, September 30, 2011

Down But Not Out

I was following the progress of launching of the Long March vehicle that lifted clear from the Jiuquan spaceport in the Gobi Desert at 21:16 local time (13:16 GMT) yesterday, carrying China's first space laboratory, Tiangong-1 and on a path to an orbit some 350km above the Earth. Unfortunately, it will have a space life of only two years.

I have this wish that if I could see the launch from a near distance, that would be awesome. I have always been fascinated by deep space since I was a little boy. Since I had cancer, I noticed that I have lost interest in many things and this is one of the few interests that I have left.

Update
I took a  break from blogging yesterday. I was really tired. I woke up at 10.30am and after my morning routine, I was feeling tired. I did not sleep well the night before. I took a nap after lunch but was still sleepy after I woke up. My legs were hurting and I started to have some difficulty breathing. There was congestion in my lungs and I found myself grasping for air. I was not feeling too well and spent most of my time resting.

The latest development on my lungs are not a good sign. There has been consistent congestion but it has not caused my so much more difficulty breathing until now. At times, I seems to have asthmatic symptoms. I am not sure what to make of it but I don't have a good feeling about it.

Recently, two of my TCM classmates have asked me to monitor a blood test result called D.H.L (diffuse histiocytic lymphoma). I checked all my Malaysian blood tests that I have done in the past and this specific test was not done but I managed to find it with my blood test that I took while in Mexico. The readings was 112 (range from 130 to 271) U/L. I Google search to determine what this test is about but I could not find much information except that is a lack of a metabolic enzyme and the deficiency is an indication of the presence of cancer in the lymphatic system. Actually, this is not new information for I have already discovered a lymph node on my left collar bone since last July 2010 by physical examination. This test probably serves to confirm the existence. Perhaps, this could explain why I am experience breathing difficulties.

At the moment, I am seeing a chiropractor and also a orthopedic surgeon to deal with my legs pain. I found that my mobility has dropped 50% as I try to limit my movements. This has caused me great inconvenience and I dread the day I am wheelchair bound or worst, bedridden. Not withstanding all these negativity, I am still hopeful that my doctors are able to do something about the legs.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Still

Yesterday while I was at the Chiropractic Center, they also took my weight. I have put on another 1.4kg! Wow, that was barely one and a half months ago since I weigh myself. I now weigh 66.2kg. I need to watch my diet. At this rate I am gaining weight, in no time I will be back to my old obese self. I have been eating almost non stop over the past month. I have now to cut back to eating only at regular hours. Also, the weight I am putting on are not at the right places. I wish more of it would be at my butt (that would make sitting more comfortable) and some on my face. Instead, I am getting a spare tyre.

Besides the weight, the nurse also took my blood pressure. It's a little way out at 125/75. My breathing is still heavy and trying to take bigger intake of air makes it worst. I am also experiencing some pain around my ribs area and near the left arm pit. I am doing some like exercises in the hope that it would help in my breathing.

I am still not sleeping at the regular hours, most of the time sleeping past 2am and then getting up very late. It has upset my daily juicing routine. If I force myself get up early like this morning, I will get tired after lunch and would want to take a nap. If I did take the nap, then I will sleep much later in the night, getting caught in a viscous cycle. Sometimes, I am tired because of this.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Trying Non Invasive Therapy

After a hectic and tumultuous week, the dust has settled down. The pain comes and goes and life goes on. I must still be very tired because this morning, I only got up at 11am. My breathing is still heavy especially when I lie down to sleep. Otherwise, I feel good.

After my morning enema, I wanted to make my carrot+apple juice when I found out there was a power cut. No notice from power company,  nothing. So I went out for a quick lunch and thereafter to IMU to see a chiropractor. I am very sure my spine needs some tweaking considering the way I am limping. The doctor after an physical examination started with a general realignment. He hopes that this would help me. It would take a number of therapy sessions. My next session is Friday.

Cancer Cost 'Crisis' Warning from Oncologists

The cost of treating cancer in the developed world is spiralling and is "heading towards a crisis", an international team of researchers says.

Their Lancet Oncology report says there is a "culture of excess" with insufficient evidence about the "value" of new treatments and technologies.

It says the number of cancer patients and the cost of treating each one is increasing. It argues for reducing the use and analysing the cost of cancer services.

About 12 million people worldwide are diagnosed with cancer each year. That figure is expected to reach 27 million by 2030. The cost of new cancer cases is already estimated to be about £185bn ($286bn) a year.

A group of 37 leading experts from around the world say the burden of cancer is growing and becoming a major financial issue.


"In general, increases in the cost of healthcare are driven by innovation. We spend more because we can do more to help patients."

For example, the number of cancer drugs available in the UK has risen from 35 in the 1970s to nearly 100, but the report warns they can be "exceedingly expensive".

It adds: "Few treatments or tests are clear clinical winners, with many falling into the category of substantial cost for limited benefit."

The cost of drugs is not the only target for criticism.

Lead author Prof Richard Sullivan told the BBC: "It's not just pharmaceuticals. Biomarkers, imaging and surgery are all getting through with very low levels of evidence - the hurdles are set too low."

The report calls for a proper evaluation of the relative merits of conventional surgery and less invasive robotic surgery.

The cost-effectiveness of minimally invasive robotic surgery is questioned.


Source: BBC

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sometimes Things Are Tough

My condition has taken for a slight turn for the worst since Saturday. I have stopped taking the Pregabalin pain killer for my nerve pain on my right leg as I thought the pain was subsidizing. I have not been sleeping well since Thursday night as I have to do "night watch" over my mother. My mother suffered a severe sugar deficiency on Thursday that caused her to be blinded for a short while and also no strength at all to move around. She was also having difficulty breathing and lost her appetite as well. The doctors gave her some medication and she was sleeping most of the time. And I had to give her the medication in the middle of the night and also get ready some bread and Milo for her to take since she slept most of the time during the day. She was much better on Friday and I continued the "night watch" just in case. I slept on the couch on both days. Then Saturday came. I did some errands to refill my H2O2 and K-salt supplies. The pain on my right leg was getting bad and I  decided not to cook lunch and dinner and instead packed some foods from the organic shop. Went for my TCM class and quickly came home as I was yawning in class, ready to sleep. As night descended, I could not sleep, had problems breathing normally when I lay down on bed. I just could not get enough air. That dang right leg was at it again. The night refused to set me free and I seems to be getting up, going downstairs and coming up again to what seems forever. Finally, at 6am my body felt worn out and I quickly went upstairs to take my much needed rest.


I woke up at 11am Sunday, still sleepy but could not sleep further because I was feeling hungry, still have to make my morning juices and also do the morning enema. My lawyer called and he said there is no need to meet to discuss the details of my trust deed and my will. I was so relieved.  After a quick lunch and immediately after taking my supplements, I was feeling real lousy. I felt sick, restless and retired to bed. I could not sleep, only laying in bed and only woke up to make my juices and I guess the rest helped me somewhat a little as I felt better towards the evening. I am in no mood to cook dinner and went out for a quick dinner and then arranged for a massage on my legs. My masseur said I limped real bad. Evening came and I hope to forget the memory of yesterday night.  History repeated itself and I find myself sitting on bed at 2am typing this post. I went downstairs to take the painkiller Pregabalin least I spent the rest of the night massaging my leg.  As soon as I lie down to sleep, the breathing turned heavier. Not even using my personal oxygen generator helped. Why am I having problems breathing normally again? This never happened before, just the last two days.

As if not enough, I have also been coughing rather regularly. But this time, when I cough, I can also feel the pain of the nerves on my groin! It's so painful to cough. What are my options as I sat on my bed thinking? I have scheduled to meet my orthopedic surgeon on 4 Oct and maybe I will move my appointment a little earlier if the right leg is going to keep me awake all night again for the next few days. This time I make sure a scan is done on my right leg.

Just finished this post and the clock says 2.44am. I am feeling hungry, got to go downstairs to make something to eat. That's one good part about Gerson Therapy, eat anytime when hungry.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sunday Wakeup Post

Dear Malaysians,

According to the National Cancer Society Malaysia, it is estimated that one in four Malaysians (1:4) will develop cancer by 75 years old.

That's scary isn't it. Sorry to spoil your Sunday. Somebody's got to wake you up.
Prevention is the cure! Cancer treatment will bankrupt you of your entire savings. Change your lifestyle before it's too late.


Alpha Radiation Treats Prostate Cancers
I picked the above news from BBC about a trial of a new cancer drug, which accurately targets tumors, has been so successful it has been stopped early. Doctors at London's Royal Marsden Hospital gave prostate cancer patients a powerful alpha radiation drug and found that they lived longer, and experienced less pain and side effects. The medics then stopped the trial of 922 people, saying it was unethical not to offer all of them the treatment.

In 90% of patients with advanced prostate cancer, the tumor will have spread to the bone. At this stage there are no treatments which affect survival. The study looked at patients with these secondary cancers, as the source of radiation - radium-223 chloride - acts like calcium and sticks to bone.

Half were given the radium-223 chloride drug alongside traditional chemotherapy, while the other patients received chemotherapy and a dummy pill. The death rate was 30% lower in the group taking radium-223. Those patients survived for 14 months on average compared to 11 months in the dummy group.

The trial was abandoned as "it would have been unethical not to offer the active treatment to those taking placebo", said Dr Parker.

While I agree that an extension of three months of life is good for cancer patients, I wonder why conventional doctors claimed this to be "so successful". I wonder how much more money the pharmaceutical company is going to make from the patients for the radium-223 chloride drug to experience less pain and side effects and live three months longer?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Tale of Four Patients

What's happening to me the last few days? Nothing much. Those dang legs still a nuisance although the pain has subsided somewhat. My left knee joint seems to be the main problem now. Anyway, will see what the orthopedic surgeon says when I meet him next. My mother has also been sick the last few days. So it's been quite busy for me too.

I feel quite sad this month. On Tuesday night, I received a call from an ex-colleague. My ex-colleague told me that her father has been diagnosed with Stage 2 cancer. Had undergone treatment and I think the prognosis is always good for Stage 2 cancer patients. But she told me her father is depressed. I know when the doctor tell you that you have cancer, the first thing that comes to mind is that I am going to die. Anyway, I encouraged her to have a chat with her father. Then on Thursday night, another ex-colleague called me and told me his father has been diagnosed Stage 4 lung cancer. The whole family is  disappointed and did not know what to do. He thought of me and called me to have a chat. His father is now very weak. There are two nodules in the lungs the bigger one measuring about 4.5cm. They also have not discussed treatment options with the oncologist. Then I suggested to him to consider Cyberknife. Cyberknife is a non-invasive, precisely-targeted form of radiotherapy which provides an alternative to the conventional surgical treatment of cancer. In view of his father's condition, I said it's worth a try to discuss with Cyberknife's oncologist. I told him to be strong. There will always be help and all he needs to do is just ask.

Earlier this month, I also met one and spoke to another women, both with Stage 2 breast cancer. The first women was Ms C, aged 43. She look quite stressed when I met her and I asked where what's on her mind? She said she worry about her one year old son. I told her she should not worry about her son because there will be her husband, uncles and aunties to love and take care of him. What is more important is that she should now take care of herself. She is under family pressure to take the conventional therapy. Like many cancer patients, death is always on her mind. She wanted to have an assurance if conventional treatment is going to help. I told her I know of quite a few Stage 2 breast cancer women who are now on remission. The second women, Ms E aged 48 was a classmate of my ex-neighbor.  Unlike Ms C, Ms E was full of enthusiasm and life over the phone. She called me because she just wanted to know some of the diets to take. Actually, she has already changed her diet and I just clarified a few points to her. She had the lump taken out and now undergoing radiotherapy. After that, she is going to Europe on holiday. Hey, that's the spirit to adopt when you have cancer. We agreed to meet when she is back from Europe. I want introduce coffee enema to her. Two women, both Stage 2 but behaving in opposite ways.

Cancer, the word that creates fear and confusion to the patient and caregivers alike. What happens to us as cancer patients and as caregivers depends on the choice we make.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Acid/Alkaline Foods - The Debate Continues...

First, let's look at how our digestive system works.

Organs that make up the digestive tract are the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine—also called the colon—rectum, and anus. Inside these hollow organs is a lining called the mucosa. In the mouth, stomach, and small intestine, the mucosa contains tiny glands that produce juices to help digest food. The digestive tract also contains a layer of smooth muscle that helps break down food and move it along the tract.

Two “solid” digestive organs, the liver and the pancreas, produce digestive juices that reach the intestine through small tubes called ducts. The gallbladder stores the liver's digestive juices until they are needed in the intestine. Parts of the nervous and circulatory systems also play major roles in the digestive system.

Swallowed food is pushed into the esophagus, which connects the throat above with the stomach below. At the junction of the esophagus and stomach, there is a ringlike muscle, called the lower esophageal sphincter, closing the passage between the two organs. As food approaches the closed sphincter, the sphincter relaxes and allows the food to pass through to the stomach.

The stomach has three mechanical tasks. First, it stores the swallowed food and liquid. To do this, the muscle of the upper part of the stomach relaxes to accept large volumes of swallowed material. The second job is to mix up the food, liquid, and digestive juice produced by the stomach. The lower part of the stomach mixes these materials by its muscle action. The third task of the stomach is to empty its contents slowly into the small intestine.

Several factors affect emptying of the stomach, including the kind of food and the degree of muscle action of the emptying stomach and the small intestine. Carbohydrates, for example, spend the least amount of time in the stomach, while protein stays in the stomach longer, and fats the longest. As the food dissolves into the juices from the pancreas, liver, and intestine, the contents of the intestine are mixed and pushed forward to allow further digestion.

Finally, the digested nutrients are absorbed through the intestinal walls and transported throughout the body. The waste products of this process include undigested parts of the food, known as fiber, and older cells that have been shed from the mucosa. These materials are pushed into the colon, where they remain until the feces are expelled by a bowel movement.

Now, let's see what happens when the digested nutrients are absorbed into the blood.

All cells in the body continually exchange chemicals (e.g.,nutrients, waste products, and ions) with the external fluid surrounding them. This external fluid, in turn, exchanges chemicals with the blood being pumped throughout the body. A dominant mode of exchange between these fluids (cellular fluid, external fluid, and blood) is diffusion through membrane channels, due to a concentration gradient associated with the contents of the fluids. Hence, the chemical composition of the blood (and therefore of the external fluid) is extremely important for the cell. If, for instance, the pH of the blood and external fluid is too low (too many H+ ions), then an excess of H+ ions will enter the cell. As mentioned above, maintaining the proper pH is critical for the chemical reactions that occur in the body. In order to maintain the proper chemical composition inside the cells, the chemical composition of the fluids outside the cells must be kept relatively constant. This constancy is known in biology as homeostasis.

The body has a wide array of mechanisms to maintain homeostasis in the blood and extracellular fluid. The most important way that the pH of the blood is kept relatively constant is by buffers dissolved in the blood. Other organs help enhance the homeostatic function of the buffers. The kidneys help remove excess chemicals from the blood. It is the kidneys that ultimately remove (from the body) H+ ions and other components of the pH buffers that build up in excess. Acidosis that results from failure of the kidneys to perform this excretory function is known as metabolic acidosis. However, excretion by the kidneys is a relatively slow process, and may take too long to prevent acute acidosis resulting from a sudden decrease in pH (e.g., during exercise). The lungs provide a faster way to help control the pH of the blood. The increased-breathing response to exercise helps to counteract the pH-lowering effects of exercise by removing CO2, a component of the principal pH buffer in the blood. Acidosis that results from failure of the lungs to eliminate CO2 as fast as it is produced is known as respiratory acidosis.

Somethings about pH
  • The human body is SLIGHTLY acidic when it is in a state of health.
  • The Ideal range for the human BODY is suggested, by some sources, as between 6.1 and 7.0. Others indicate a preference for 6.5 to 7.5, taking into account variances during the day in accord with metabolic cycles.
  • North American blood levels often fall between 7.25 and 7.45, which is slightly alkaline. When blood pH falls between towards 6.35 (too acidic) hemoglobin in the blood deteriorates and the red blood cells cannot carry adequate oxygen to the tissues. When muscles, and connective tissues are too acidic, acidosis is experienced.  
  • A healthy vagina produces a normal discharge which acts as a natural cleanser and when maintaining an acidic pH level of 3.5 to 4.5 (very acidic), it keeps a balance between healthy and unhealthy bacteria, fungi and viruses in that area.
  • The pH level of one's breath will be a combination of the pH level of the air being exhausted from the lungs plus the influence of pH levels in the sinuses and the mouth.
  • The ideal pH for the human body will vary from individual to individual and compensate for a variety of factors including these:
      • Basic Personality;
      • Energy blocks;
      • Imprinting;
      • Blood Type;
      • Education;
      • Culture;
      • Food.
  • The manner in which one interacts with their environment and themselves will influence their pH level.
  • To reach the Optimum pH, the factors above, would act on the ideal pH of a particular person's body so as to influence it up, or down, to the optimum pH.  
  • Persons who are intense and/or passionate will tend to exert more influence on their pH balance from day to day than someone less so. Negative emotions increases acidity.
Some observations.
So all digested foods from the stomach is acidic. It enters the small intestines and depends on the pancreas to neutralizes the stomach acids. For people with chronic diseases like cancer, the pancreas does not function optimally and hence unable to neutralize the stomach acids fully allowing an acidic environment to exist. It also does not produce enough pancreatic enzymes. Dr William Kelley (in his book One Answer To Cancer) says "Malignancy indicates an active pancreatic enzyme deficiency." At least 86% of all cancer conditions could be adequately treated and/or prevented by diet and pancreatic enzymes. You can read Dr Kelley's book here.
 
So, how does taking in alkaline foods which becomes acidic in the stomach due to the stomach acids make our body more alkaline? Is it a unsustainable claim? It looks like Dr Gabe Mirkin, M.D.  is right.

My personal experience is this. I have been on the alkaline diet for more than two years now. I don't think my body is much more alkaline than when I started the diet. There is one way to forced the body to become more alkaline. Please see Dr. Waltraut Fryda's Dextrorotatory Lactic Acid.

Please share your views.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Acid/Alkaline Theory of Disease Is Nonsense


This post could change that way you think about Acid/Alkaline foods. Readers' discretion is advised.

Acid/Alkaline Theory of Disease Is Nonsense
by Gabe Mirkin, M.D.
 

Have you seen advertisements for products such as coral calcium or alkaline water that are supposed to neutralize acid in your bloodstream? 

Taking calcium or drinking alkaline water does not affect blood acidity. Anyone who tells you that certain foods or supplements make your stomach or blood acidic does not understand nutrition.

You should not believe that it matters whether foods are acidic or alkaline, because no foods change the acidity of anything in your body except your urine. Your stomach is so acidic that no food can change its acidity.

Citrus fruits, vinegar, and vitamins such as ascorbic acid or folic acid do not change the acidity of your stomach or your bloodstream. An entire bottle of calcium pills or antacids would not change the acidity of your stomach for more than a few minutes.

All foods that leave your stomach are acidic. Then they enter your intestines where secretions from your pancreas neutralize the stomach acids. So no matter what you eat, the food in stomach is acidic and the food in the intestines is alkaline.

Dietary modification cannot change the acidity of any part of your body except your urine. Your bloodstream and organs control acidity in a very narrow range. Anything that changed acidity in your body would make you very sick and could even kill you.

Promoters of these products claim that cancer cells cannot live in an alkaline environment and that is true, but neither can any of the other cells in your body.

All chemical reactions in your body are started by chemicals called enzymes. For example, if you convert chemical A to chemical B and release energy, enzymes must start these reactions.

All enzymes function in a very narrow range of acidity. (The degree of acidity or alkalinity is expressed as "pH."). If your blood changes its acidity or alkalinity for any reason, it is quickly changed back to the normal pH or these enzymes would not function and the necessary chemical reactions would not proceed in your body.

For example, when you hold your breath, carbon dioxide accumulates in your bloodstream very rapidly and your blood turns acidic, and you will become uncomfortable or even pass out.

This forces you to start breathing again immediately, and the pH returns to normal. If your kidneys are damaged and cannot regulate the acidity of your bloodstream, chemical reactions stop, poisons accumulate in your bloodstream, and you can die.

Certain foods can leave end-products called ash that can make your urine acid or alkaline, but urine is the only body fluid that can have its acidity changed by food or supplements.

ALKALINE-ASH FOODS include fresh fruit and raw vegetables. ACID-ASH FOODS include ALL ANIMAL PRODUCTS, whole grains, beans and other seeds. These foods can change the acidity of your urine, but that's irrelevant since your urine is contained in your bladder and does not affect the pH of any other part of your body.

When you take in more protein than your body needs, your body cannot store it, so the excess amino acids are converted to organic acids that would acidify your blood.

But your blood never becomes acidic because as soon as the proteins are converted to organic acids, calcium leaves your bones to neutralize the acid and prevent any change in pH. Because of this, many scientists think that taking in too much protein may weaken bones to cause osteoporosis.

Cranberries have been shown to help prevent recurrent urinary tract infections, but not because of their acidity. They contain chemicals that prevent bacteria from sticking to urinary tract cells.

Taking calcium supplements or drinking alkaline water will not change the pH of your blood. If you hear someone say that your body is too acidic and you should use their product to make it more alkaline, you would be wise not to believe anything else the person tells you.

A healthy lifestyle
─ exercise and rest, diet, etc ─
YES !

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Peace One Day



Today is Peace One Day!

Peace One Day is calling for and working towards a day of ceasefire and non-violence observed by all sectors of society globally via the United Nations to sanction officially a day without conflict; a day without hatred; a global day of Peace.

To learn more about Global Truce 2012, click here.

MAY THIS DAY BE THE START OF EVERLASTING PEACE.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Dichloroacetic Acid (DCA) - A Potential Cancer Cure

Last Saturday, TC who is my TCM teacher told me that this coming week, he will talk on cancer from the TCM point of view. He asked me if I am willing to talk to my classmates about my cancer fight which I gladly agreed. He also told me to investigate DCA or Dichloroacetic acid.

I am also very excited by DCA because of its potential cure for so many cancers and can be ordered online and best part is, not expensive. DCA has already been (safely) used on humans to treat mitochondrial/metabolic malfunctions and, considering that cancer is a mitochondrial malfunction, the doctor should be able to prescribe DCA to you as on "off-label" drug. The FDA allows medical doctors to prescribe drugs that have been used for one disease, to use against a different disease, if the physician feels that it is prudent and has a chance of working. There are also two testimonials of cancer patients with advance kidney cancer where DCA was used it as an adjuvant drug. There is also a testimonial from a Malaysian patient with breast cancer remission.

I would suggest that you visit this DCA site (for which most information of this post was derived from) for more detail information. I have extracted the key information for this post.

Dichloroacetic acid (DCA)
According to Wikipedia, Dichloroacetic acid, often abbreviated DCA, is the chemical compound with formula, CHCl2COOH. It is an acid, an analogue of acetic acid, in which two of the three hydrogen atoms of the methyl group have been replaced by chlorine atoms. The salt and esters of dichloroacetic acid are called dichloroacetates. Salts of DCA have been studied as potential drugs because they inhibit the enzyme pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase.

Cancel cells change the way they metabolize oxygen in a way that promotes their survival. In laboratory studies of isolated cancer cells grown in tissue culture, DCA restores the original metabolism, and promotes their self-destruction. This has led to the use of DCA for treating cancer, by individuals experimenting with it themselves, by doctors administering it to patients as a non-approved drug, by scientists testing it in cancer tissue cultures in cell culture and in mice, and in human Phase II studies. DCA has improved certain biochemical parameters, but it has not demonstrated improved survival.

A study in mice at the University of Alberta showed that "DCA induces apoptosis, decreases proliferation, and inhibits tumor growth, without apparent toxicity." In 2010, a small human trial on 5 cancer patients and 49 samples of tissue was conducted. The results were encouraging, and DCA "appeared to extend the lives of four of the five study participants".

How does DCA work, briefly?
The Michelakis team reports that DCA turns on the mitochondria of cancer cells, allowing them to commit cellular suicide, or apoptosis.

Cancer cells shut down the mitochondria, which is the part of the cell that is involved in metabolism and, incidentally, initiates the cell suicide.

A non-cancerous cell will initiate apoptosis when it detects damage within itself that it cannot repair. But a cancer cell resists the suicide process. That is why chemotherapy and radiation treatments do not work very well and actually result in terrible side effects… the healthy cells actually die much easier.

Michelakis and his team discovered that they could re-activate the mitochondria of cancer cells. Not only that, the DCA is very effective in doing it: To quote from the Michelakis paper: “The decrease in [Ca2+]i occurs within 5 min and is sustained after 48 hr of DCA exposure.” The mitochondria are so sensitive to DCA that just 5 minutes of exposure reactivates them for 48 hours.

The metabolic approach to cancer is supported by other research. Inhibition of Glycolysis in Cancer Cells: A Novel Strategy to Overcome Drug Resistance Associated with Mitochondrial Respiratory Defect and Hypoxia  is a paper by a John Hopkins research team supporting this approach. 

A team of researchers from University of Alberta, Canada studied the effects of DCA and published a paper called A Mitochondria-K+ Channel Axis Is Suppressed in Cancer and Its Normalization Promotes Apoptosis and Inhibits Cancer Growth. You can download a copy of the study here.

DCA Dosage
If you view the video from CTV you will see a jar of dichloroacetic acid prominently displayed. http://www.depmed.ualberta.ca/dca/vid1.htm is well worth watching. But they used a “cheap ...powder”. Dichloroacetic acid only comes in liquid. The powder is the sodium salt of dichloroacetic acid. It is sodium dichloroacetate. The researchers did not use the acid.
 
For those of you searching for DCA, do not buy the acid. The acid is not the same thing as the acetate. The acid is dangerously corrosive.

(We are not physicians nor veterinarians, so this information is from a private, non-medical professional, viewpoint.) 

1. It is clear from the research that one must be very careful about not going too high with the dosage of DCA for too long a period. Adults may have problems using dosages at 25 mg/kg of body weight and above for protracted periods. We see people showing side effects even at 14 to 15 mg/kg of body weight per day after three to six weeks.
2. The Michelakis paper states that DCA is dose-dependent, meaning the higher the dose of DCA the better the response. The Michelakis patent gives a dose range of 10 mg/kg of body weight to 100 mg/kg for tumor action.

The half-life of DCA in the body is about 24 hours, so drug holidays are a good way to lower the levels of DCA and avoid side effects. 

In using DCA, we urge you to consider the full protocol of DCA, caffeinated tea and vitamin B1.It appears that you can use lower doses of DCA in this protocol. Side effects are still a concern, so adjust accordingly if side effects appear.

The recommendation is once or twice a day. Split the dosage and take half in the morning and half at night. We have seen a number of excellent responses with once a day treatments.

Side effects from DCA are reported even with doses of 13 to 14 mg/kg after 6 to 8 weeks. Considering the half-life of DCA (the amount of time necessary to metabolize and eliminate half of the DCA in one's system) can run as long as 24 hours, getting off DCA periodically might help keep the levels low and make managing side effects much easier. Good suggestions we hear include taking DCA every other day, or taking DCA Monday through Friday and not taking it on weekends.

DCA Safety and Side Effects
Brain cancer patients who use DCA and caffeine are at very high risk. Please read this.

Update 1 March 2008: We are seeing a consistent response in people on the DCA-caffeine protocol. The DCA is "wiping them out". Many of the patients sleep much of the time and their muscles are weak, especially their leg muscles. Balance can be an issue and the patients can fall down. However, these patients are experiencing very noticeable response in their cancers. These symptoms are among those shown for tumor lysis.

Safety Studies
DCA is a common by-product of the chlorination of drinking water, and as a result, has been the focus of many studies. The EPA has published a large study, "Toxicological Review of Dichloroacetic Acid", a 200 plus page volume listing a summary of most DCA safety and health research done as of August 2003. WHO has published "Dichloroacetic Acid in Drinking Water", 2005. Health Canada has published "Haloacetic acids in Drinking Water" . This gives us an abundance of research to examine the safety considerations of DCA. (Please note that nowhere in the literature has any human ever been reported to have died from DCA intake) 

The Michelakis patent states that tumor action is achievable with a dose as low as 10 mg/kg. "To date, there have been no reports of dichloroacetic acid-induced neoplasia in any human tissue and no reports of gonadal toxicity in humans (Stacpoole et al., 1998a)." from WHO

"Dichloroacetic acid has been used as a therapeutic agent to treat lactic acidosis, diabetes, and familial hyperlipidaemia in humans; oral or intravenous therapeutic doses are usually in the range of 25–50 mg/kg of body weight per day (Stacpoole et al., 1998a)." WHO

NOEL: Stands for No Observed Effects Level
NOAEL is No Observed Adverse Effects Level
These levels are defined as the highest tested dose of a substance that has been reported to have no harmful (adverse) health effects on people or animals. Thanks to the extensive EPA research, the NOELs have been determined for mice, rats and dogs. These numbers range from 3 to 12.5 mg/kg.
Acute toxicity: Oral LD50 in rats is 4480 mg/kg and 5520 mg/kg for mice.

Several excellent articles relating to the safety aspects of DCA are available here

Side Effects
"Several cases of mild peripheral neuropathy following dichloroacetic acid treatment at 50–100 mg/kg of body weight per day for several months to a year have been reported (Stacpoole et al., 1998a; Spruijt et al., 2001). All were completely reversible after cessation of treatment. In one of these cases, dichloroacetic acid was reinstituted at 25 mg/kg of body weight per day following reversal of neurological symptoms, and this dose was maintained for 2 years without further evidence of neuropathy (Stacpoole et al., 1998a). " WHO article. 

"The potential benefits of DCA, with or without aerobic training, must be weighed against the potential side-effects of the drug. There were numerous adverse reports during the course of the chronic phase of the study that were directly attributable to DCA, including increased fatigue, shortness of breath, episodes of vomiting and/or gastrointestinal distress, and increased incidence of tremors, " 

A good study of side effects in dogs shows the range of side effects of DCA exposure even at 12.5 mg/kg per day and really highlights the importance of using the minimum dosages of 10 to 15 mg/kg. The higher the dosage, the more risk of side effects.

The side effects reported by users (taken from our survey to-date), include:
  • peripheral neuropathy (tingling in the fingers)
  • numbness in toes or fingers
  • shaking or tremors in hands
  • weakness in legs
  • mild nausea
  • swollen ankles
  • more urination
  • dizziness
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • sleepy
  • breathing heavier than usual
  • tingling (neuropathy) in the lips
With the use of the DCA-Caffeine-B1 protocol we are seeing a whole new set of effects. These effects appear to be TLS, as the symptoms are appearing much sooner than typically seen with DCA alone. Sleepiness, fatigue, weak legs and balance issues are sometimes reported.

You should closely monitor for side effects. We suggest that if you start to feel tingling or numbness in your fingers that you should get off DCA for a few days, then restart at the same or lower dose level. Some supplements often recommended are thiamine or folic acid. Vitamin B1 has been standard. There is movement now towards the use of benfotiamine instead of vitamin B1.

Additionally, glutamine is something to consider. Dr. Steve Martin of Grouppe Kurosawa recommends 50g/day of glutamine.

"... natural treatments such as acetyl-L-carnitine, lipoic acid, evening primrose oil, fish oil, magnet therapy, selenium and vitamin E have been shown to alleviate the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy altogether" from  http://www.peripheral-neuropathy-help.com/diabetic-neuropathy-treatment.html. It is interesting that most of these are known to be effective anti-cancer treatments.

Fish Oil supplementation has been shown to be effective. And taking fish oil is potentially a great supplement to take to fight cancer. Here is a reported remission due to fish oil.

Additionally there is talk that citric acid might help reduce peripheral neuropathy. One Dutch doctor self-medicating for his own cancer would take 20 grams of citric acid 20 minutes before taking before taking DCA.

Tumor Lysis Syndrome
Side effects atypical of DCA have been reported. These effects may be what is termed "Tumor Lysis Syndrome", the consequence of the rapid breakdown and death of cancer cells. This can be serious, and can result in death in some cases. The fact that we even have to worry about this is good news for us, because DCA is working so well against many cancers. TLS is also caused by other, standard, cancer therapies when they destroy tumor cells rapidly.
Tumor lysis syndrome (TLS) is a life-threatening oncologic emergency characterized by metabolic abnormalities that can occur during rapid tumor breakdown in response to anti-cancer treatment. TLS is most frequently seen in acute lymphocytic leukemia and high-grade NHLs, but many other hematologic and solid tumors have been associated with this complication.

According to the Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics, the following cancers are associated with TLS:
  • Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL)
  • Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL)
  • Acute myelocytic leukemia (AML)
  • Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)
  • Chronic myelocytic leukemia (CML)
  • Breast cancer
  • Testicular cancer
  • Medulloblastoma
  • Merkel cell carcinoma
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Small cell carcinoma of the lung
An academic note: TLS is not just a cancer issue. Even mass parasite death results in a situation similar to TLS. There is a related syndrome, called the Jarisch-Herxheimer Reaction, or "Herx" Reaction. This can result from bacterial lysis after the initiation of antibiotic use. 

If you develop symptoms of TLS:
1. See your doctor immediately
2. Discontinue use of DCA until the symptoms subside,
3. When you start taking DCA again, use it at a lower dose or use DCA on alternate days.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Self Portrait

This is a picture of me taken by my friend, Kok Piew when we had lunch yesterday at Medifoods. He said its been a long time since I posted my own picture. Well, so many white hairs. Maybe I take up Liz's suggestion to take the stem cells pills. She said her hair grew darker. Haha, maybe my hair will turn black too. You're so vain, sings Carly Simon. My hair seems untidy. I don't carry a comb and I like my hair free flowing, so it looks untidy. I don't like to use gel either. Waiting for it to grow a little longer so that I can tie my hair to the back. Some people still wonder why this old man is still wearing long hair?

I received an email from a friend with this caption:

Acid/Alkaline Theory of Disease Is Nonsense 
Gabe Mirkin, M.D.

I am still researching it a little more before I will write and comment on it.

More to come.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Let It Be

This afternoon, I met with three of my friends (KP, IL and SN) for lunch. We last met last December and it's really nice to meet them again. The first comment they made about me when they saw my long hair was "hey, you got Beetle's looking hair." After the usual pleasantries, I always get the usual question, "How are you doing?" As usual, I would answer, "I am doing fine. Nothing has changed very much." Sometimes when my friends meet me, they think I have recovered because I do looked well. But I tell them the tumors are still inside my body, maybe the tumors did not grow. That's why I can lead quite a good quality of life but cannot work because I have to do my daily therapy. We spent 3 hours chatting and catching up. How time flies and soon we said goodbye to each other, until the next time. I would also like to thank them for some contribution to my finances.It's really nice and kind of them. Thank you.

Anyway, I noticed that my energy level have been improving. Besides my legs problem, the only other thing that I am not sure is my chest. I feel it's compressed and congested most of the time. While I can breath normally most of the time, sometimes I do have slow heartbeat and have slow breathing, especially during bed time. I am now focusing to treat my legs.

I have made most of the arrangements and now look forward to the India trip.I have planned to travel to Tibet next July/August but it looks like it's a no go. One of my TCM classmates just came back from Tibet and she told me that a number of her friends suffered AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness)  as Lhasa is above 3,800 meters (some sites are above 5,000 meters). I don't think my lungs would be able to take it. So I will have to postponed it until I recover from cancer. So instead I have decided to go Ladakh with some friends instead around July 2012. We will make a swing to Dharamsala and I hope to get a glimpse of the Dalai Lama.


I also hope to travel to Meizhou in China to visit the Hakka villages possibly in March 2012. Being a Hakka myself, it would be nice to see how other Hakkas live in China.





Why so much traveling? I don't think into the future. There isn't one anyway, at least still true at the moment. I am not out of the danger zone, maybe only getting a short reprieve now. I just do what I want to do now and let the future play out itself.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Saturday Rantings

This is supposed to be a cancer blog. Then why do you often see a political post every now and then? I have released some toxic emotions but then  the political toxicity starts to build up in me. Got to release them you know, otherwise I might die of political poisoning instead of the cancer. I am writing because I care and love this country. I thought of doing my little part in case I pass on just like that.  Besides voting, I think this is a good way to get the message across. The pen is mightier than the sword.

On the eve on Malaysia Day (16 September), the Prime Minister announces a number of reforms. For example, the draconian law, the Internal Security Act 1960 (ISA) is to be repealed. Hurray! Good news but wait. He further announced that it will be replaced by two new laws. So what so good about this when you do away with one ISA but introduced two new ones, ISA2 and ISA3? Penang Chief Minister said (as reported in The Malaysian Insider), "We do not want to see a situation where you are pouring old wine in a new bottle". According to the Bar Council, we already have sufficient laws to deal with communism and terrorism.

Then there are those politicians who earlier opposed the repeal of ISA but now claiming credit for its repeal. Dammed those politicians. So excuse me for ranting. I can continue to complain, I have long list but then this will become a political post. I will also vomit blood by then. Not good for keeping anger in the body. Actually, I wanted to shout "!@#$%^&*", that would be therapeutic but would go against my style and impolite. Enough of politics for now.

A Close Encounter With An Urologist

Doc: What can I do for you?
Me: Please have a look at the CT scans.
Doc: As he sees the scanned images, his head nooded negatively.
Me: Is there a possibility of carrying out a laparascopic surgery?
Doc: Lie down here and let me check the abdomen phsically.
Me: I lay on the bed as he uses his hands to feel the kidney tumor.
Doc: Good, the tumor is still mobile, we can do a surgery but it's too big for laparscopic surgery.
Me: Can I do this surgery without taking the Sutent drug?
Doc: There is no benefit doing the surgery alone. Anyway, they now have an offer, you only need to pay two months for the drug, the drug company pays for the rest of the year.
Me: I read Sutent does not have very good results. My other urologist said all his patients died within 6 months.
Doc: All patients will all die, it's a question of how many more months. We try and make our patients have a good quality of life in the meantime. Why do you think the drug company is willing to sponsor 10 months of free drugs? Because they know you won't live long! I thought, damn him, how can he say such a thing in front of his patient.
Me: In that case I am better off continuing doing what I am doing. I was thinking, what good quality of life? Stuent has all the side effects of chemotherapy, is that good quality?
Doc: What are you doing?
Me: I am on alternative therapy such as nutrition and TCM.
Doc: Those treatment are not clinically tested (gave a long lecture about clinical trials). You are throwing good money into the river.
Me: But I am still alive after 12 months (this meeting happened 1 year ago), better that those on Sutent?
Doc: The cancer is slow growing, you may not be so lucky in the future.
Me: Let me think about taking the surgery and Sutent proposal. I wanted to say "!@#$%^&*" with the proposal that you know will kill me but did not.

The above is a true account of my conversation (edited to make it short) with a urologist that happened one year ago. The urologist was impolite, cocky and have zero tolerance for alternative treatments. If I did not read and researched before meeting the doctor, my life would have probably ended 9 months ago. So still want to follow what your doctor says all the time?

Friday, September 16, 2011

Better Late Than Never

Dear Malaysians,

This is the first time we are celebrating Malaysia Day since it's formation 48 years ago. Why? Political amnesia.

Happy Malaysia Day!




Gerson Therapy Update
I have restarted my B12+liver injections yesterday. However, instead of giving myself daily injections, I am giving myself two injections a week. I am also taking the Neurobion vitamin B pills. This will help to address the nerve pain. Other than these changes, my Gerson therapy remains about the same.

Women's Cancers Reach Two Million
Two million women were diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer last year, according to global figures. A sharp rise in cases was seen in women under 50 in low-income nations, say US experts. Women in richer countries fared better due in part to screening, medicines, anti-smoking policies and vaccines, they report in the Lancet.

The new global statistics from hundreds of cancer registries worldwide found there were about 2 million new cases of breast and cervical cancer in 2010, and 625,000 deaths.

Dr Rafael Lozano, professor of global health at IHME, another co-author of the paper, said the world used to think of breast cancer as a problem for high-income countries but as the world has become more globalised, this is starting to change.

"The main known risk factors for breast cancer - poor diet and obesity - are now becoming more commonplace in poor countries," he said.

"We have found that while countries such as the United States and United Kingdom have been able to lower the risks of women dying from breast cancer, through better screening and treatment, countries with fewer resources are seeing the risks go up."

With cervical cancer, the number of cases and deaths are rising more slowly than breast cancer, he added, with the number of deaths from cervical cancer going down in high-income countries.

"Our concern is that this is a disease that is almost entirely preventable through safe sex practices and early detection, yet it continues to kill nearly a half a million women every year.

Source: BBC

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Temporary Fix

As a pain killer, the Pregabalin drug wears offs and the pain comes back. I don't think it tackled the root cause of the problem. One of the main reason why I don't take pain killers is that it is very damaging to the kidneys. Yesterday, by lunch time, I was feeling a little painful again. Of course, after taking the drug, I felt better. Anyway, I will monitor the situation and see what the doctors says in three weeks time. Meanwhile, I am continuing my acupuncture treatment.

Last few days, I have been watching a Korean serial Drama (title loosely translated: Love in 90 days). I bought the DVDs sometime back before my cancer days but did not have time to watch until now. The movie revolves around a couple. They met during their undergraduate days, fell in love but unknown to them, they are related as 1st cousins. The boy's father objected to the relationship. The boy was adamant in marrying his sweetheart and decided to elope to USA to get married. On the day of flight, the father had a meeting with his son and pleaded for the final time to his son to end the relationship and marry another girl of his choice (to help his ailing business). When the son did not agree, in a fit of rage, the father threw himself on to a oncoming lorry and was killed in the process. The boy was saddened by the event, broke up with his sweetheart but did not tell her the reasons. Some years later, the boy married the girl of his father's choice and had a daughter while the girl met and married someone else. Many years later, the boy discovered he had cancer and was given 3 months to live. He then decided that for once in his live, he should live as he wanted. He then went to look for his former sweetheart in the hope that he could spent the last of the 90 days with her. Subsequently, he asked for a divorce from his wife, quit his job and move out to stay on his own.  The bulk of the story is about their relationship during this 90 days. The complications were that both of them are married too. It's quite a touching movie. I have not completed watching the movie.

I have always wondered how people would behave when they have cancer. Although I have met many cancer patients, I have no idea how they behave privately. So far, what I saw from movies are that the person will be temperamental and depressed and almost NEVER bothered to look for alternative treatment. They just take whatever treatment the doctor recommends and then wait to die. After all, movies are from novels written by humans authors, who possibly will act that way if he or she has cancer. I find it hard to reconcile with my own behaviour.  I don't behave that way so it seems strange to me if I am normal?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Changes Don't Come Easy

Yesterday, I took one Pregabalin tablet after lunch and then drove downtown to meet my hypnotherapist. One of the side effect of Pregabalin was drowsiness. I did not feel the drowsiness until two hours later. By then, I was back home from town. I took another tablet at 10pm, had my supper and then went to bed. The drowsiness took effect and I fell asleep. I better not drive when I take this medication. After taking the medication for one day, half the pain gone!

Yesterday afternoon, I received a SMS from my hypnotherapist. She was wondering if I am able to give empathy help to one of her stage 4 lung cancer patient who seems to have lost motivation. The wife of the patient came running to her crying for help and my hypnotherapist said I could help to motivate him. I said yes, prepared some juices to drink and take along and then drove to my hypnotherapist's clinic in Kuala Lumpur. The patient lives a few doors away across the road. My hypnotherapist gave me a briefing about the patient and also showed me the radiologist report (taken in July). After reading the report, I thought deteriorated a bit but not that bad (considering my own report is worst than his). My hypnotherapist said according to the report, his physical condition should not be so bad.

I met the patient, in his 50s by his bed side. He has been immobile for a week or so. The wife told me that her husband has taken the 1st round of 6 cycles of chemotherapy. The first two cycles, the tumors regress a little but did not respond from the third cycle onwards. By the time the 6th cycle came, her husband was suffering from severe side effects. After the chemotherapy treatment, a CT scan was performed in July and the tumors grew in size and numbers, it also spread to the throat and the stomach. The doctor has recommended another round of chemotherapy starting in October 2011. The wife is not too keen on taking the chemotherapy after see how her husband has suffered from the side effects. As it is now, he has constipation and had no bowel movement for one week. He is not able to walk and having aversion to cold, lying in bed. He is also suffering from poor appetite. I was told when he was doing the 1st round of chemotherapy, he was eating at the nearby hawker stalls. Many MLM distributors came and sold supplements which was supposed to help him. Now the patient needs support, where are these MLM  distributors? Not only the patient did not take many of the supplements, they are not even sure what the supplements are for.

I gave a pep talk to the patient urging him not to give up. I also explain to him what cancer feeds on and we should take foods that are good for the body and not for the cancer. I also told the wife at this juncture, there most important question is what treatment is your husband going to do i.e. go for the second round of chemotherapy? I have refrained from giving any of my views about chemotherapy. I said once the decision has been taken, I can provide some information what she can do to help her husband. Meanwhile, I told her to contact my hypnotherapist (who is also a medical doctor) to get some medication to solve the constipation problem immediately. If medication does not help, I have suggested doing water enema. My hypnotherapist has suggest to the wife that her husband be given something light to eat like porridge and fresh juices (such as vegetables, carrot and apple+carrot) to drink in the meantime. I also reminded the patient to watch his diet carefully and that is one weapon directly under his control. From his reaction, I am not sure if he can take the strict Gerson diet.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pain Treatment

Finally, I met the consultant orthopedic surgeon this morning at SJMC to talk about the pain on my right pelvic area. I told him I have kidney cancer with lungs metastasis and no conventional treatment taken. His reaction was "Really?". I said "yes, doctors said no medication will help", and that was 2 years ago. He did a brief physical examination to see where the pain was. The doctor said the pain is not from bone metastasis because I did not experienced pain during rests and at night (during sleeping time). Since my pain symptoms is only when I start walking, it's likely a nerve problem. The doctor prescribed two drugs (Pregabalin and Neurobion) for three weeks and thereafter a follow-up. I asked the doctor besides drugs, is there any other therapy that I can take? He said he would not recommend me any (like hot therapy) because it may aggravate the tumors. If pain symptoms still persist then, he will recommend me to do another scan. This is the first time I will be taking a pain management drug as Pregabalin has been shown to be effective for neuropathic pain disorder. Neurobion is a vitamin supplement mainly consisting of B1, B6 and B12.

I was coughing a little more than usual these few days. The fruit juices and the vegetable dishes that I am taking are cooling in nature. So, I took some ginger tea yesterday evening. It helped and I was not coughing at night. This morning, the cough came back. Looks like I got to drink more ginger tea.

My hypnotherapist called me yesterday and told me I got a little bonus. The College that organised the Cancer Talk to the students (I was told they are already practicing hypnotherapists doing a final practical) given by my hypnotherapist that in appreciation, the College will be paying me a little fee. Hey, I did not expect any payment when I agreed to participate but I am not complaining. I was also asked if I am keen to participate in the future. Of course, I am more than happy to participate. I also learned some things about hypnotherapy by attending the talk.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Moonlight Sonata

Today, the Chinese all over the world, celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋節) also known as the Moon Festival or Zhongqiu Festival is a popular harvest festival celebrated by Chinese, Taiwanese and Vietnamese people. In Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines, it is also sometimes referred to as the Lantern Festival or Mooncake Festival. The Mid-Autumn Festival is held on the 15th day of the eighth month in the Chinese calendar, which is in September or early October in the Gregorian calendar.  The traditional food of this festival is the mooncake, of which there are many different varieties.


Mooncakes are normally very sweet. So this year, my brother bought some mooncakes that are not sweet. I managed to sample a little slice. My first taste of mooncake in two years! Looking forward to next year and hopefully, I can have a slightly bigger piece.

Accompanying the celebration, there are additional cultural or regional customs the most common being carrying brightly lit lanterns, lighting lanterns on towers, floating sky lanterns.

Yesterday, I had a full day. By evening, I was really tired and went to bed early. I switched on the personal oxygen generator for a 20 minute session and fell asleep in the process. I woke up at about 3.30am as I was feeling hungry. Made some oats meal and then went back to sleep after eating.

This morning, I woke up at 9.30am, still tired. A quick health check:
  1. Energy levels are medium.
  2. A little coughing with white phlegm.
  3. Chest a little congested and breathing a little slow at times.
  4. Sleeping quite well.
  5. Eating very well.
  6. I think I may have gain a little bit more weight.
  7. Main problem is pain in the right pelvic area that is affecting my right leg and hence walking.
  8. A little backache.
  9. Overall pain levels are low.
  10. Overall, feels good.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Survivor - 2nd Anniversary

This morning, my hypnotherapist is giving a presentation to a group of undergraduate students also studying hypnotherapy. She has purposely arrange for the talk to be given today and also invited me to join in as a guest. This is to celebrate my second anniversary of survival. My hypnotherapist specialises in dealing cancer patients and she will be sharing her experience with the students. As for me, the students will have an opportunity of meeting a cancer patient and I will participate in the question and answers session. My hypnotherapist has asked me to answer frankly so that the students can understand the dynamics of dealing with a cancer patient.

In the late afternoon, I will be visiting the Traditional Malay Masseur in Kuang for a follow-up session. I hope I would recover in time for my trip to India in November 2011.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Eve of Anniversary

Four days ago, I received an email from Liz, another cancer friend who contacted me about taking a targeted therapy. Someone from Australia wanted to donate a box of Tarceva (RM9K) to someone needy and she was kind enough to think of me. I thank her for her kind gesture. Unfortunately, my doctor says my condition is too advance for any conventional therapy and it would be better for me not to do any treatment. It will be a  waste of money. So I wrote back to her to thank her for contacting me and it would be better if the drug is given to someone who will respond to the treatment.

Today is a special day for me because tomorrow, I will be celebrating my second anniversary since getting cancer. I never thought I will reach this milestone as none of the seven specialist doctors gave me a chance. You may think why seven doctors? That was because I consulted two oncologists (one from Singapore and one from Malaysia)  and 5 urologists. I was planning to go for radical nephrectomy and consulted three new urologists that had experience with the laparoscopic surgery procedure. But my tumor was too large for laparoscopic surgery,so I did not remove my tumor. But I had two very good urologists (one from Singapore and one from Malaysia). They advised me to continue to do whatever I am doing. Now, I have survived two years. Big deal for me because I was given six months to live. So happens, my anniversary also falls on September 11.

When I did not take conventional treatment, many thought I was crazy, trying to commit suicide. When I made that decision, I have not learned anything about alternative therapy. I was not even aware that Gerson therapy existed. Some may think I am reckless for making such a decision without information. Actually, I don't need to know about the alternatives therapies other than there are alternatives. This is because if I take conventional treatment, I am going to die, its only a question of how many more months. If I take alternative treatment, I have a chance of living longer than six months and maybe a cure. So the decision was really not difficult to take but many including some family members did not understand. Stage 4 kidney cancer still have no conventional cure to date.

So, I have been living on bonus time, very generously given to me. Should my therapy fails me in the future, I do not have any complaints and will gladly go. Despite my cancer, I am also blessed with achieving awareness, something I could not see in my cancer free days.  Many events (sad and happy) happened during this difficult time which I think will not happen if I did not have cancer. Nothing happens by accident. But will this cancer leave me? This fate has not been decided yet. There is no fate but what we walk.

Friday, September 9, 2011

It's Getting Better

My first experience with the Traditional Malay masseur last night was "painful". This is because the method adopted is to realigned back the affected parts. Firstly, he discovered that my right leg is slightly shorter than the left leg, which was why I walked with a limp. He corrected it by pushing and pulling, not that painful. Then he worked on my left leg and said there are some blockages near the knee joint. He pressed his thumb against the blockage area (already painful), asked me to relax and while talking to me, pulled my leg straight when I was not paying attention. That was painful! He said I should feel better and asked me to monitor and if necessary go back for a follow-up three days later. He then applied some ointment on my left knee area and that ointment is really warm and hot. Even this morning, I can still feel the warmness on my knees. I was really thankful to Yeong and Khadijah for driving me all the way to Kuang to see the masseur. Without him showing me the way, I don't think I can find the house even with GPS the next time I go for follow-up.

Meanwhile, I will also continue with my acupuncture treatment. My legs are much better now and the limping is not so obvious. I think it needs a little more time to heal.

Last night, I did not sleep well. A little coughing but otherwise, I feel OK. A bit tired today.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

We Have To Try

I went acupuncture treatment for my legs for three consecutive evenings. So far, so good. My legs are actually feeling much better and not that painful anymore. But I think the root problem, especially on my right leg has not been resolved. This evening, Khadijah and Yeong will be take me to see a traditional Malay masseur for diagnosis and treatment. Meanwhile, I hope to take an x-ray scan on my right legs and pelvic area tomorrow.

You may be wondering why I spent so much time documenting pain an various parts of the body. I also describe my treatment in detail and whether the treatment works or not and the healing reactions. This is because the Gerson therapy is not available in many countries. I don't believe there are qualified Gerson therapists in Malaysia (there are in Singapore). I would like to reproduce a comment made by Homer, a reader on my May 18 post:

Hello CT, your blog is very important to me to understand the healing reactions of Gerson therapy. Last week my mom have a good energy after an intravenous (vit. C and b complex) procedure done by a nurse, after 2 days she was back to a very weak body until almost 4 days now. My problem is/are I can't find some potassium salt compound and the lugol's solution, and the crude liver/b12 injectable here in the Philippines. Btw my mom is in stage 4 breast cancer with bone mets(as what the doctor said), and discourage my family to undergo a chemo. My sisters are blaming me of my moms inability to walk and wake-up, as in she is losing some energy and she dislikes green juices and vomit several times with coughing. I am troubled if this situation is part of healing or something to be scared? But I see her improvement in her hair, skin and some aches are gone. The retracing of her old pneumonia as part of healing reactions could sometimes troubled me if her cancer spread to her lungs. I haven't gone to an alternative doctor yet, I always rely on google and some advices from nutrition expert. I hope this will not bring some stress to you. 

I do not encourage self diagnosis or self treatment. But for various reasons unknown to us, for some this may be the only the way to go. I just hope what I have documented will be helpful to some people as they undertake this difficult journey.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Unnecessary Bureaucracy

Yesterday, I received a call from EPF (Employees Provident Fund) informing me that I need to present myself to two clinics under EPF's panel of doctors for my withdrawal under Kehilangan Upaya (Lost of Ability) application. I think this is intriguing. The clinics are just general practitioners and how are they going to evaluate cancer cases? I have complied with all the requirements of withdrawal and my medical report was signed by a consultant urologist. Furthermore, I am only withdrawing my own money. Why the bureaucracy?

I knew my withdrawal is not going to be so smooth because when I submitted the application form, the officer that interviewed me would not believe I am a stage 4 kidney cancer patient and possibly needed another opinion. The fact that I look healthy did not come free. A lot of work has been put in including:
  1. I took the most important decision of my life by not accepting my doctor's recommended conventional treatment and instead went for Gerson therapy.
  2. Become a vegan overnight on a very strict diet of no oil, no sugar, no salt, no dairy products, no soy products and low protein diet to rebuild the body.
  3. Drink 10-13 juices a day, 365 days a year.
  4. Performed more than 2,000 coffee enemas to detoxify my body.
  5. Take in daily more than 100 tablets consisting of supplements, herbs and medications including daily self-administered liver+B12 injections to rebuild the immune system.
  6. Hire and work with a hypnotherapist to re-frame my mind.
  7. Spent countless months to identify, understand and release toxic emotions trapped in the body. This is still work in progress.
  8. Spiritual therapy.
  9. Strong support and encouragement from family, friends and readers like you to keep me going and
  10. Money from my savings to fund the above therapy.
I have used about RM150K (US$50K) including RM55K (US$18K) for treatment in Gerson Clinic, Mexico for the past two years. I do not come from a rich family and depended on my own savings and some contributions from my family and friends but the bulk of treatment comes from my own savings.

This morning, I went to EPF to collect the appointment letter and then called up the clinics to ensure that they have my file. I visited the two panel clinics as required by EPF and as I have guessed, much of the information about the cancer (supported by the latest radiologist report) and my present treatment are all provided by me. Basic questions asked includes "Why don't you work?" and "Why you want to withdraw?" and the answers seems so obvious. The consultation was short and completed in about 10 minutes. Now, I have to wait for the clinic to report back to EPF. I have a strong feeling my application would be approved in due course.

Gift of Sight Project

Dear Readers, 

This 'Gift Of Sight' project, in conjunction with World Sight Day, is carried out in collaboration with KL Eye Specialist Centre in Kepong.  CIMB Foundation through Lions Club KL Bukit Kiara, will be sponsoring 50 cataract operations for the poor & needy - 'A Gift Of Sight to the Poor and Needy'.  They are extending this 'Gift Of Sight' program to the residents (with cataract problems) under the Ti Ratana Community & Welfare Centres.

We are to identify the needy & poor who need cataract operations and organise for them to be sent to the KL Eye Specialist Centre in Kepong for their pre-surgery checkups, surgery and post-surgery checkups at their designated dates fixed by the Eye Specialist Centre.  Perhaps you can also, through your channels, source about 10-15 prospective deserving patients (Malaysians)

Love and Thanks
Yin Mei
PR Liaison
Ti-Ratana Penchala Community Centre

In conjunction with this, The Lions Club will be having an event and hope that representatives from our Centre can attend together with the beneficiaries who are selected for the free cataract operations:-
DATE : 16TH OCTOBER 2011 (SUNDAY)
TIME : 9.30 AM TO 12.30 PM
VENUE : KL EYE SPECIALIST CENTRE, KEPONG.

If you know of any needy persons (contacts for Old Folks Homes, Care Giving Homes, Under-Privileged Homes etc. will also be valuable.) that needs a cataract operation, please contact Jeffrey Cheah (jeffmachoman@gmail.com), volunteer of the Tri-Ratana Gift of Sight Project. Alternatively, you can also contact me by email and I will email you back a form to complete, after which, the form is to be submitted to Lions Club of KL Bukit Kiara for evaluation.  

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Beautiful Sunshine

I was listening to Richard Clayderman's 25 Years of Golden Hits which include his famous pieces such as Ballade pour Adeline, Mariage d'amour, Lettre a ma mere, Souvenirs d'enfrance, A Comme Amour and many others when I started to write this post. I find listening to this album relaxing. The pieces are soothing and provide some kind of therapeutic effect. When I am in some kind of sombre mood, I find listening to the music of the Secret Garden very helpful. This morning, despite setting my alarm to wake up at 8.30am, I was so tired I could not get up from bed until 10.30am. I just wanted to continue to sleep. But I have to get up. I got to do my morning enema, make juices and then take my breakfast. Sometimes, I just wonder why I feel so tired. Maybe it's the cumulative effect of some earlier days that I have not been sleeping well.

I have this funny feeling in me. Sometimes, I do feel I am cancer free but yet I know the cancer is still in there, somewhere. It does not disturb me because I am pain free most of the time but yet at times, I do feel some pain here and there. Maybe the cancer is just reminding me that we are now co-existing peacefully. Gaining about 4kgs in the past months has brought me some good effects. My skin, especially on my butt is much firmer and less painful to sit on. My face has grown a little rounder, not that haggard looking. Some people have been complaining about my free flowing long hair. They felt I look much younger if I kept short hair. I thought, this is one time I can do things differently, that means I get to keep my long hair.

The weather has been quite warm and hot in the afternoons. Since Sunday, I have this feeling that Chinese New Year is just around the corner. The hot weather coupled with the warm wind just reminds me of the new year feeling. Of course, it's too early in September. I normally only get this feeling around November and December but this year it seems early to feel this way. On one hand, I like the warmness feeling that the weather brings but as the day progresses, the hotness and humidity can be discomforting. When the big bright sun is out and shining, I feel positive and charged. But when the skies are gloomy with an impending thunder storm, my mood switches instantly. That’s one of my idiosyncrasies. We males have one advantage. When the weather is really hot, we can run around naked in the house.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Napping Blues

Today, I thought I would wait and write about a meeting with a cancer patient but up till now, she is still in the hospital. Yesterday morning, I received a call from S, someone I did not expect to call me. I have written about her mother's cancer before (I referred to her mother as Mama S) more than a year ago. Anyway, S told me that her sister has cancer and after seeing the doctor at the hospital, she has not been sleeping. She hope that I could spend some time talking to her today after her bone scan at 1.30pm. I think I will write about this meeting some other day.

Yesterday, I was really tired. My left knee felt a little painful in the afternoon and my mother gave me a short knee massage and in the process I fell asleep. I think I woke up about half hour later but I was so tired, I could not get up. So I continued to rest for another half hour or so. When night came, I could not sleep. Although I retired to bed at past 11pm, I just could not sleep. Finally, at about 3am, I woke up and gave myself another round of knee massage, this time on my right leg. At times, I also use hot water bottle to ease the pain. I think the pain is not from the muscle but the nerves. Anyway, after massage, I went back to sleep. Despite my legs problems, I think the condition has improved. The pain on both my legs are not as painful as before. Not only that, I can actually walk much better too. My acupuncturist told me last Saturday that the pain on both legs are related and when he treated me, he treated both legs at the same time. I have always responded to my acupuncturist's treatment.

As I write this blog, I am actually very sleepy but I have decided not to take a nap. I noted that of late, every time I take a nap I can't seems to sleep so early at night.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Local Ginseng (Talinum Patens)

I would like to thank Khadijah and Yeong for providing me the fact sheet that enabled me to write this post.

Botanical Name: Talinum Patens
Synonym: Talinum paniculatum/Portulaca Patens L
Common Name
English: Jewels of Opar, Panicled Fameflower
Chinese: Tu Ren Shen
Malay/Indonesian: Ginseng Halus/ Som Jawa
Thai: Som Kon

Habitat: Found in South America to Continental America, widely naturalized in China and Indo-China.

Parts Used: Roots, leaves and stems.

Medicine Usage
Encyclopedia of Herbs by The Royal Horticultural Society
  • Root is used in folk medicine in parts of SE Asia as a subsititute for ginseng
  • Culinary usage - young leaves and stems are eaten fresh in salads, added to soups, or cooked briefly as vegetable.

Chinese Medicinal Herbs of Hong Kong - Vol 1, pg 30/31
  • Preparation - Roots washed, steamed and then dried
  • Characteristic - Sweet, calming, strengthens the lungs
  • Indications
    • Deliberation, weakness, excess sweating
    • Cough
    • Diarrhea inadequate lactation
    • Enuresis (bed wetting), irregular menses
    • Dosage - boil 30 - 60gms
Long Life Magazine Special Edition No. 2
  • Plant can be used as a vegetable and for soup. It helps to boost energy and clear the lungs
  • The roots can boost energy after sickness, coughs, regulate menses and urine flow (Boil roots with red dates, Tong Sam and Pak kei)
  • Leaves can be used to reduce swelling (Must remove skin of roots before use)
Malaysian Herbs by Goh Kong Ling, Vol 1 pg 157
  • As a tonic to strengthen the lungs, detox and used to reduce swelling
  • For weakness, lethargy, incontinence, coughs, irregular mensuration and diarrhea - boil 60gms to drink
  • For boils and skin disease - pound leaves into poultice and apply
CyberMed - CBN
  • Roots - Sweet/neutral, strengthens lungs, tonic, aphrodisiac
  • Leaves - Stomatic-improves appetite, contains saponin, flavonoids, tanin
  • Roots used for weak body system, excessive sweating, dizziness, low libido, coughs, lung TB, weak lungs, diarrhea, enuresis, irregular periods, low breast milk production
  • Leaves used for - breast milk production, boils and poor appetite
  • Usage - Roots, dry 30-60gms, boil and drink
  • For Low Libido - Slice 50gms very thinly - steep 3/4 mug of hot water and drink it warm
  • Poor Appetite - Stir fry fresh leaves and eat as a vegetable
  • Boils - Grind with brown sugar - paste on boils
  • NB: Fresh roots for medicinal or storage (drying) purposes must be steamed before hand. Using fresh roots may cause diarrhea.

This plant is very easy to grow and can be found in the wild and even on road sides.

I have some of the documentation in Mandarin and Malay/Indonesian. For those of you who would like to read in Mandarin or Malay/Indonesian, please email me.