Across the province, patients undergoing standard cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation, are seeking out naturopathic doctors (NDs) for adjunctive care. Many of the immune-supporting therapies NDs provide can help patients recover from cancer treatment faster and support overall health. Commonly called “adjunctive” cancer therapy, NDs focus on decreasing negative side effects of conventional treatment; balancing a patient’s immune system; and providing concrete strategies for cancer prevention and health maintenance.
The protocols and therapies NDs employ may include botanical medicine (herbs, plants and plant extracts), clinical nutrition (using nutrition not to simply modify diet but prevent disease and improve overall health), as well as physical modalities, Asian medicine, homeopathy and counselling. Some NDs work closely with oncologists and others in the cancer community to facilitate patient care.
However, navigating the diverse range of adjunctive cancer care available can be daunting. Fortunately, BCNA member Dr. Neil McKinney has published the second edition of his Naturopathic Oncology: An encyclopedic guide for patients and physicians. Dr. McKinney’s book has proven to be a very popular and practical guide to clinical success with cancer treatments. His revised edition adds new therapies, refinements of protocols, expanded references and builds on his personal expertise focused on cancer care and advanced scholarship. The comprehensive text outlines very detailed protocols to integrate support for surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and targeted adjunctive therapies. It also goes into all the leading naturopathic medicines for a wide range of cancers, for complications and co-morbidities, as well as cancer emergencies. Doctors find it a practical resource, as well as providing detailed information on mechanisms of action, scientific references and examples of protocols that have actually worked with cancer patients. But while it is a succinct handbook for practicing clinicians, it’s also a useful resource for patients who are looking for qualitative information on alternatives and support to standard medical care, and a better understanding of the options available outside of common treatments.
Naturopathic Oncology: An encyclopedic guide for patients and physicians
by Dr. Neil McKinney