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Welcome to the Cancer Health Forums, a round-the-clock discussion area for people who have any type of cancer, their friends and family and others with questions about living with cancer. Check in frequently to read what others have to say, post your comments, and hopefully learn more about how you can reach your own health goals.

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Recent Posts

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Cancer Research News & Studies / Immunometabolism Research
« Last post by danialthomas on November 17, 2019, 05:01:37 pm »
Over the past decade, “immunometabolism” has become one of the most exciting areas of scientific research. Immunometabolism is an emerging field that investigates the interaction between immunologic and metabolic processes. Interest in this field is gaining momentum due to the realization that metabolism plays a central role in immune responses in healthy individuals and lack of proper immune response in those with cancer (see http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocel.2012.04.024). This important discovery has validated our decade-long approach that was designed to starve tumor cells and spur immune cells to attack the tumor (see http://www.newhopeforcancer.com).

Another exciting area of scientific research is immunosurveillance restoration. An effective immune system can identify and destroy nascent (emerging) cancer cells in a process called immunosurveillance, which functions as our primary defense against cancer. Advancing age is associated with a decline in adaptive and innate immunity, known as immunosenescence. Contributing factors include atrophy of the thymus gland and declining bone marrow activity, resulting in a reduction of cytotoxic T-cells (CTCs) and natural killer (NK) cells. This impairs immunosurveillance and leads to an accumulation of cancer cells, cancer stem cells, and senescent cancer cells. Using a combination of repurposed medicines, peptides (short-chain proteins), and plant-derived compounds, we have found it possible to reverse immunosenescence by regenerating functional thymus tissue and boosting the production of CTCs and boosting NK cell production in the bone marrow.

Dr. Daniel Thomas, DO, MS
Mount Dora, Florida, USA
Living with Skin Cancer / are freckles/spots on your feet a sign of cancer?
« Last post by katiem on October 14, 2019, 04:07:14 pm »
My mom used to worry about marks specifically on the foot, saying it was pretty unusual for freckles to be there so it could be cancerous. Recently I’ve noticed a few and am not sure how long I’ve had them but they look like normal freckles to me. Is this cause for concern just because they are on my foot?
« Last post by danialthomas on October 13, 2019, 04:06:49 pm »
Cancer is a serious and terrifying disease. If you have been diagnosed with cancer, your mind is probably filled with fear, worry, and questions. Therefore, it is extremely important to talk openly and frankly with your oncologist. To better understand your disease and your treatment options, it is imperative to ask the right questions. If you are determined to beat cancer, here are the top 10 questions you need to ask your oncologist:

1. What is the rationale for your recommended treatment and is your expectation curative (achieving long-term remission) or palliative (only improving quality of life)?
2. What are the likely side effects of treatment and how will you deal with each of them?
3. How do you plan to prevent damage to the DNA and mitochondria of my normal (healthy) cells?
4. Treatment resistance, systemic toxicity, and immunosuppression are leading causes of treatment failure and subsequent mortality. What is your plan to overcome these challenges if they occur?
5. How many of the following hallmarks of cancer will you be targeting: a) Genetic instability, b) sustained proliferation, c) replicative immortality, d) dysregulated metabolism, e) evading growth suppressors, f) resisting cell death, g) tumor-promoting inflammation, h) angiogenesis, i) tissue invasion and metastasis, and j) immune evasion?
6. Cancer stem cells are thought to be a root cause of cancer metastasis, treatment resistance, and disease recurrence. What will you be doing to target my cancer stem cells since chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery do not target these cells and can, in fact, stimulate them to proliferate and spread?
7. What will you be doing to strengthen my immune system to help fight cancer?
8. Studies have shown that a significant percentage of cancer cases have their roots in diet and lifestyle. Also, chemotherapy and radiation can lead to nutritional deficiencies. To address these issues, what diet, lifestyle, and nutritional supplements do you recommend that may improve my treatment outcome?
9. What might my overall survival time be if I follow your recommendations compared to not following your recommendations?
10. Are you knowledgeable about alternative cancer treatments? If not, are you willing to work with physicians with expertise in integrative cancer therapies that can exploit the metabolic deficiencies of cancer cells and sensitize them to conventional therapy; provide nutritional support; enhance immunity; reduce the risk of cancer metastasis and recurrence, and help improve overall survival and quality of life?
The above questions will help you prepare for your appointment so you will come away from the visit with the crucial information you need to move forward and fight cancer properly. Do not be afraid to ask these questions. Your health and very life may be on the line, so insist on complete answers from your oncologist. Ask a friend or family member to accompany you as a second set of eyes and ears to listen to what the doctor says. And be sure to take notes for later reference.
Note: It is important to have your eyes wide open as you move forward, so please be aware that the oncologist may not be current in his or her understanding of cancer cell biology, what causes cancer, and how to prevent its recurrence. The oncologist may not be informed about the crucial role that nutrition plays in fighting cancer, may mock the idea of changing your diet and lifestyle, and may be dismissive of anything outside of conventional therapy. For many cancers, conventional therapy alone may not be enough. There are complementary and alternative treatments you should be aware of.
Dr. Daniel Thomas, DO, MS
Cancer Research News & Studies / The Problem Of Anemia
« Last post by danialthomas on October 06, 2019, 06:59:16 pm »
Anemia (low hemoglobin) is a common problem in cancer patients. It is a result of the disease itself and/or bone-marrow suppression resulting from chemotherapy. Hypoxia is the chief consequence of anemia, a condition where insufficient oxygen makes it to the cells and tissues in the body. This can happen even when blood flow and oxygen saturation measurements are normal. Prolonged hypoxia stimulates the formation of hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha (HIF-1α). Accumulation of HIF-1α initiates a whole cascade of events that causes tumor cells to proliferate, including angiogenesis (growth of new blood vessels to nourish cancer cells).
Pro-oxidative, cytotoxic therapies, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and intravenous vitamin C are less effective under hypoxic conditions. Also, hypoxia can inhibit the anti-cancer activity of repurposed drugs. For example, under hypoxic conditions, metformin is unable to activate AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and inhibit mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), which then prevents the inhibitory effects of metformin on tumor growth.
The vicious circle of hypoxia, disease progression and further anemia presents a challenge. We deal with this challenge by using targeted plant-derived compounds that have been shown to inhibit the formation of HIF-1α, even under hypoxic conditions. This results in slowed tumor cell growth and division. In cases of anemia, to sensitize tumor cells to the pro-oxidative, cytotoxic effect of intravenous vitamin C, we administer supplemental oxygen during treatment.

Dr. Daniel Thomas, DO, MS
Living with Prostate Cancer / Re: husband embarrassed by diagnosis- how can I help?
« Last post by metsfan232 on October 04, 2019, 10:05:15 am »
Telling my wife about the diagnosis was hard enough, i felt weak and then the chemo made me weaker, unattractive, and i was unable to be the husband i wanted to be. That’s probably how he feels now too, like he cannot be there for you and is now pushing you away because he is uncomfortbale and frustrated with himself. My wife was in your same spot a year ago and started doing something that really helped, she would ask a simple question about how i was feeling, the diagnosis, or anything generally related to the cancer. If i shrugged her off with a non-answer she never asked another question or pushed it, but would just stay there and say that she was there to listen hen i wanted to talk. I dont know if this will help but what i am trying to say is dont push him to talk, but when you are together give him time to get comfortable in that type of convo and eventually say more to you.
: hi, another wife who was in the same boat as you a month ago. It was so hard to see my husband isolate himself, but I was able to help him talk to me about it more by sending him literature on guys he was a fan of who struggled with prostate cancer. Lots of celebrities, athletes, talk show hosts, and authors have spoken out and reading their thoughts/supporting them can make him feel less alone. I read an article on here about Ed Randall (my husband is a fan of baseball) when i told him about the activism that others who have been diagnosed are doing it was a positive influence on his mood for sure. While none of them can change their diagnosis, there is hope to help others with early detection :) if your husband is an activist type show him this article, maybe it will inspire him to talk about it https://www.cancerhealth.com/article/swinging-fences-defeat-prostate-cancer-ed-randall
Living with Breast Cancer / Re: feeling guilty/have 3 daughters
« Last post by stopcancer28 on October 03, 2019, 12:09:38 pm »
I can only imagine how you are feeling, but I’m sure your girls do not (and will not) blame you for this. Just try to remember that this is not your fault! As for telling them what your diagnosis may mean for their future, it just means that you may need to be more on top of monitoring their health as they get older. Proactivity is a good thing and it is always better to catch something in the early stages, which is what you and your three girls will aim to do! Best wishes. xx

Living with Lung Cancer / Re: need to quit smoking (recently diagnosed)
« Last post by healingfuture48 on September 26, 2019, 10:41:24 am »
 Hi! Fellow ex-smoker and lung cancer patient here. Best thing to tell yourself is that as bad as it is, it really only lasts for a month and the physical symptoms last less time than the mental symptoms. I had some terrible nausea, insomnia, and headaches for the first week, which in the scheme of things wasnt too long. I didn’t vape or try any gum or patches. What worked best for me was staying busy (as physically as i could with the chemo, but mental stimulation is just as good) and drinking a TON of water (also good for you during chemo bc you will be dehydrated!). Also staying away from social situations where there were a lot of smokers helped. It was hard because most of my friends smoke, but if you have friends that are supportive they will understand. I just asked my friends to not smoke in front of me and we tried some new places to hang out as well. I know it is so hard, I had been smoking since 8th grade, sometimes i still get the occasional craving too, but with the cancer it’s just something that has to be done. Rip off the bandaid and suck it up now, you will thank yourself later :).
Cancer Research News & Studies / Cancer Metabolism
« Last post by danialthomas on September 24, 2019, 07:53:18 pm »
Recent scientific discoveries have led to an update in the theory of what causes cancer. Contrary to the old “genomic” theory that cancer is caused by DNA mutations in the nucleus of a cell (nuclear DNA), the new “metabolic” theory of cancer holds that cancer’s deadly path begins in the mitochondria where cells generate energy. Mutations in nuclear DNA are involved, but they are likely secondary to or a consequence of defects in the energy-producing mitochondria. Under this theory, cancer is a metabolic disease and the tumor is a “symptom.” Thus, to treat cancer more effectively, you must target the one weakness that is common to virtually all cancers. That common weakness is damaged mitochondria resulting in altered metabolism.
Cancer needs a steady source of energy and molecular building blocks to produce more cancer cells. Normal cells obtain most of their energy from a process called oxidative phosphorylation, also known as respiration. Cancer cells, on the other hand, switch their metabolism to obtain most of their energy from glucose (sugar) in a process called aerobic glycolysis, also known as the Warburg Effect or fermentation, as the byproduct is lactic acid. The Warburg Effect exposes a fundamental weakness of cancer cells which is their reliance on excess glucose for survival and maximal proliferation. It has been observed in numerous experiments and has inspired treatments that target tumor growth by depriving cancer cells of glucose.
If faced with insufficient glucose, to ensure their survival, cancer cells can often turn to “Plan B” and switch their metabolism to derive energy from the amino acid glutamine and/or fatty acids. Glucose, glutamine, and fatty acids are the primary fuels that drive most cancers. To starve and weaken cancer, we are pioneering the use of diet, meal timing, plant-derived compounds, and repurposed drugs to deprive cancer of the glucose, glutamine, and fatty acids it needs to grow and spread.
When backed into a corner from glucose, glutamine, and fatty acid deprivation, some cancer cells can turn to “Plan C” and use protective autophagy as a last resort to ensure their survival. Also known as the Reverse Warburg Effect, this is a process where weaker cancer cells and surrounding normal cells are partially “digested” to create energy-rich metabolites, including pyruvate and lactate that can be used to feed hungry cancer cells. Fortunately, there are repurposed drugs have been shown to inhibit protective autophagy.

Dr. Daniel Thomas, DO, MS
Living with Colon Cancer / Cologuard test
« Last post by markred3 on September 18, 2019, 03:26:13 pm »
I recently got a new doctor and he pushed me into taking a cologaurd test. I previeously did a fecal blood test and it was negative, but the Cg came back positive. I have a colonoscopy scheduled for the beginning of August but I am going crazy cause I heard Cologaurd can have false positives. I also have been trying to get my report back but it has been impossible. Do you think I could get my doc to do another blood test? That may help ease my mind.
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