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By Lee Euler
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Drug Companies May Actually Possess the
|Have you heard the latest buzz among cancer patients?
Clinical trials and anecdotal evidence confirm that low dose naltrexone (LDN) can arrest cancer progression, reduce symptoms, and even help your body heal itself.
And patients are talking it up all over the Internet.
Burton Berkson, M.D., Ph.D., reports LDN's amazing effect on cancer, as well as arthritis, lupus, MS, and other autoimmune diseases.
What's more, LDN is inexpensive and FDA approved.
There's only one small catch...
LDN, so far, has not been approved for conditions besides dependence on alcohol and opium-derived drugs. You can still get it off-label for other purposes, but LDN is effectively being kept under wraps and most people — probably including your doctor — don't even know it exists.
Now anyone who knows me or my colleagues or this newsletter knows we don't care much for conventional drug therapies. The best evidence is that cancer is a systemic disease — that is, a disease of the whole body — that's induced by our lifestyles and the surfeit of poisons in modern, industrialized life.
But we're not going to turn our backs on something that works — drug or not. And based on my team's early investigations, LDN looks like the most promising cancer treatment I've seen in a long time.
The Stunning Power a "Mini-Dose" Can Deliver...
Naltrexone is a pharmacologically active opiate antagonist used to treat drug and alcohol addiction, typically at doses of 50mg to 300mg. It was FDA approved in 1984 for those purposes.
More recently, researchers discovered that low dosages of LDN (3 to 4.5mg) could modulate your immune system, and were valuable for successfully treating various kinds of cancer -- and a wide range of autoimmune diseases as well, including:1
One physician, Dr. Jacquelyn McCandless, even found that LDN helped children with autism.
Dr. Bernard Bihari — the discoverer of the clinical effects of LDN in humans — began to treat cancer patients with LDN in 1999.2 Most of these patients had failed to respond to standard treatments and in many cases they were already gravely ill when first seen by Dr. Bihari.
Although not considered a controlled clinical trial, medical records suggest that Bilhari's clinical 'off-label' use of LDN on 450 cancer patients significantly benefited more than 60% of them.
Of 354 patients with whom Dr. Bihari had regular follow-up, 86 showed at least a 75% reduction in tumor size. Another 125 patients were stabilized or moving toward remission.
This stands in sharp contrast to standard cancer treatments — surgery, radiation and chemotherapy...
Take, for example, chemotherapy... In 2004, the Journal of Clinical Oncology published a revealing study about chemotherapy's success rates. The study's authors examined how many cancer patients were still alive after 5 years. It states:
The overall contribution of curative and adjuvant cytotoxic chemotherapy to 5-year survival in adults was estimated to be 2.3% in Australia and 2.1% in the USA.
In other words, the incredible misery and bank-busting expense of chemotherapy add about two percent more days to the average patient's life. That means if a patient would have survived five years without chemotherapy, he or she can expect to live — are you ready? — five additional weeks with chemotherapy. That's right: No chemotherapy: five years. Chemotherapy: five years plus five more weeks.
And for this you lose your hair, can't eat, throw up all the time — and you accelerate our country's fast-approaching bankruptcy.
Besides that, you may well die of an infection BEFORE the five years are up because chemo trashes your immune system. And if you do die of an infection, it won't be counted as a "death from cancer." They'll write on your death certificate that the infection caused your death, never mind that chemo brought on the infection. That is, the five-year cancer survival statistics are a lie.
LDN therapy thus looks like a very promising alternative. It offers the possibility of long-term stabilization and/or gradual reduction of the size of the tumor.
If the results hold up, cancer could possibly become a manageable chronic disease with which patients could live free of symptoms — without the crippling side effects of chemo and radiation treatments.
Unfortunately, Dr. Bihari lacked up-to-date follow-up data on 96 patients. Of the other 354 patients — those for whom we know the results -- 84 died (all but 4 due to cancer-related causes). Most of these deaths occurred within the first 8-12 weeks on LDN, and were patients who were extremely ill and had exhausted all other treatment options by the time they saw Dr. Bihari.
As mentioned earlier, 86 showed a very large reduction in tumor size and another 125 showed smaller but still substantial benefit from LDN. Those who showed the best progress toward remission had never received chemo. No surprise there.
The apparent remissions among Dr. Bihari's patients included3:
(Note: Recently-diagnosed prostate cancer patients without previous therapies appear to do well on LDN. But those with prior hormone-related therapies, including testosterone-blocking drugs and PC-Spes, were unresponsive to LDN.)
Overall, it appears plausible that about 60% of cancer patients could benefit from LDN. This is underscored by Dr. Bihari's observation that earlier treatment with LDN seemed to improve results.
The National Cancer Institute is looking into it too. In June 2002 an oncologist reviewed some 30 charts of Dr. Bihari's cancer patients (more about this in a minute). About half were said to have responded to LDN without a doubt. With patient permission, medical records went to the NCI for further analysis and for consideration for NCI's Best Case Series.
Can LDN Work as a Stand-Alone Treatment?
Dr. Bihari had 88 patients with cancer in partial or total remission whose outcome appeared to be clearly attributable to LDN alone. The LDN-only group included:
Other LDN-only cases — with some now on LDN for up to 4 years — include patients with:
However, most of Dr. Bilhari's cancer patients were on other treatments besides LDN.
So, how exactly does LDN work?
The Amazing Value of Endorphins... a Natural Phenomenon
You've probably heard of endorphins. They're your body's 'happy pills'. They make you feel exhilarated after working out (for instance, the so-called "runner's high"), give you energy, reduce stress.
Scientifically, endorphins are neurotransmitters in your brain that regulate immune function, cell growth and pain sensation. They bind to neuroreceptors.
In simple terms that means... endorphins act like a key in a lock. They lock into the receptors and prevent pain-causing agents from sending their pain messages, much like morphine and codeine, but without the risk of addiction.
But endorphins do a whole lot more than give you a runner's high. Some people call them a natural wonder drug.
According to the Journal of Immunology, the release of endorphins can boost your immune system.
Scientists have discovered that the beta-endorphin activates NK cells (natural killer cells) which are believed to kill cancer cells. Beta-endorphins also relieve pain, reduce stress, and postpone the aging process.
LDN works by inhibiting these endorphins for a short time — resulting in a rebound effect in endorphin production.
Those higher levels then up-regulate vital elements of your immune system and promote corresponding increases in T-lymphocytes. Apparently the increase restores your normal balance of T-cells to reduce the impact of the disease.
It moves your immune response in a positive direction...
The Greatest Discovery of the 20th Century...
The potential benefit of LDN for cancer arose largely from the work of Penn State's Dr. Ian Zagon and his colleagues.
Dr. Ian Zagon and his team at Penn State University researched naltrexone and other opiate antagonists. They found that one particular endorphin, metenkephalin, inhibited cell proliferation… reducing inflammation in autoimmune and neurological disorders, and stopping cell growth in tumors.
Zagon published evidence that LDN:
Anecdotal reports of LDN causing remission include colorectal, mammary, ovarian, small-cell and non-small-cell lung, and prostate cancers, plus Hodgkins and non-Hodgkins lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and neuroblastoma.6
LDN appears promising for prostate cancer prevention and early treatment, given that all anecdotal cases not previously receiving hormonal treatments went into remission.7
Dr. Bilhari believed LDN's anti-cancer action was due to an increase in:
So Why Haven't You Been Told?
Let's just say, "It's all about the money." That's about the only explanation that adds up. After all, this is a pharmaceutical drug. It's not some "wacky" herb or Chinese concoction or a mystery machine that zaps you with radio frequencies. There's no reason for conventional medicine NOT to embrace LDN except that it might destroy the chemotherapy-industrial complex.
Most likely, pharmaceutical companies shun LDN because it's so cheap and effective… plus it's off-patent so there's no incentive for them to invest money in research. As a generic drug, it offers no prospect for a huge multibillion dollar payoff.
In the past five years, I've seen plenty of evidence the drug companies don't want cheap competition to their expensive (and toxic) chemo drugs.
In today's world, your doctor likely gets almost all his knowledge of drugs from drug company reps — who will spend tens of thousands per year to motivate a doctor to prescribe the latest, most profitable (to the drug companies — not to you!) drugs available.
So unless you get this information to your doctor and insist on LDN for your treatment, you're unlikely to ever hear your doctor discuss it.
But not to fear... they are able to prescribe it.
How to Get an LDN Prescription
LDN is available by prescription only. Any physician can ethically and legally prescribe LDN as an off-label prescription.
Most doctors don't know about it, so they won't broach the subject with you.
But you have done your homework, and can print critical information from the Internet to give your doctor.
Cancer patients and those with autoimmune diseases are aggressively seeking out physicians who will prescribe it.
You will probably have to educate your doctor — here's how:
If your doctor won't budge, your best option is to seek a holistic physician who can prescribe it for you. You can go to the LDN-Yahoo Group for recommendations from its 4,000 members.
LDN prescriptions are usually filled at compounding pharmacies. A list of competent and reliable pharmacies can be found at www.lowdosenaltrexone.org.
Please note: You should never, ever accept a preparation of "long-acting" or "slow release" naltrexone.
Here's the Scoop on Safety...
Low dose naltrexone shows itself to be a safe and promising approach to prevention and treatment of cancer (and other diseases).
To date, the adverse effects from clinical studies have only amounted to temporary insomnia and vivid dreams.
However, a few warnings are in order. According to lowdosenaltrexone.org you should heed these precautions:
www.Lowdosenaltrexone.org reports that LDN is perfectly safe to take during pregnancy and breastfeeding, and in some cases apparently lowers the rate of miscarriage. The website notes that more than 50 moms have taken it during pregnancy and lactation with no adverse effects.
Personally, I wouldn't want to take ANY drug under those conditions, but a pregnant or nursing mom who won't consider true non-drug alternatives might take a look at this new drug therapy. It certainly seems better than chemo.
In sum, LDN appears to be a very promising treatment to strengthen your immune system. It has the potential to literally turn your life around.
These are early days for this breakthrough. I'm sure there's still a lot to learn. But compared to conventional chemotherapy? No contest. I'd go for LDN.
Sources to check for further information:
(Numerous youtube videos discuss ongoing clinical trials, speakers from professional LDN conferences, and more. Each of the above two videos will lead you to similar ones.)
4Berkson BM, Rubin DM, Berson AJ. Reversal of signs and symptoms of a B-cell lymphoma in a patient using only low-dose naltrexone. Integ Cancer Therapy, 2007; 6:293-6.
5Berkson BM, Rubin DM, Berkson AJ. The longer-term survival of a patient with pancreatic cancer with metastases to the liver after treatment with the intravenous alpha-lipoic acid/low-dose naltrexone protocol. Integ Cancer Therapy 2006; 5:83-9.
6www.lowdosenaltrexone.org, a doctor-managed website.
7www.lowdosenaltrexone.org, a doctor-managed website.
8Smith JP, Stock H, Bingaman S, Mauger D, Rogosnitzky M, Zagon IS. Low-dose naltrexone therapy improves active Crohn's disease. Am J Gastroenterol 2007: 102:1-9
9Gironi M, Martinelli-Boneschi F, Sacerdote P, Solaro C, Zaffaroni M, Cavarreta R, Moiola I, Bucello S, Radelli M, Pilato V, Rodegher M, Cursi M, Franchi S, Martinelli V, Nemni R, Comi G, Martino G. A Pilot Trial of Low Dose Naltrexone in Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis. Mult Scler 2008; 14(8):1076-83
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