Alternative Medicine in Curable Cancer

One of the most frustrating things in the clinic is meeting with patients and their families who refuse standard proven treatment in favour of options which may not have any logical or scientific basis.

It gets worse when the cancer is completely curable with standard treatment.

Most of us can reason with patients to an extent, after which it is their call. Their life. Their responsibility.

Or is it?

Do we as a medical community need to increase awareness about wrong information being dissipated amongst patients and their families? Or do we already have enough work than to spend time on this. This is a relatively small proportion of patients who are so extreme. Should we just leave them to their thoughts and ideas?

Recently I met a lady who had a breast mass but refused all treatment including a biopsy. After lots of chatting, she told me that her spiritual leader had not given her permission for treatment. We negotiated and ultimately she agreed that God has given us common sense. Prayer is vital for everything. We also need to use our brains for decisions. She agreed for treatment in the end.

“Dr Web-browser” seems to have the answers. Depends on what we are looking for.

Social Media and Doctors

Where do we stand as far as social media is concerned? How many doctors/nurses have accounts for Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, MySpace, etc, etc etc? More importantly how many doctors/nurses have been contacted by patients, their friends or relatives to become “friends”.

Where does the line of professionalism and personal info blur? I think this is dangerous. Be very careful.

Most hospitals in Australia would not want staff to have social media accounts giving or discussing information about patients or about the hospital activity.

Social media is a great source of engagement and information with friends and family. Stick with that 🙂

Generic versus Innovator Medicines

There are so many generic molecules available worldwide, yet we in Australia do not realize the extent of the same. In the past few months, the generic molecules are being pushed more by chemists (yet might charge patients/medicare for the innovator molecule).

Is there a true difference in the salt or preparation? I am really not sure. Would I use a generic for myself… probably not, would prefer the original molecule. My impression is that the big pharma guys who made the molecule, also invest heavily in removing impurities. This is hardly ever mentioned in the data presented. Everyone talks about the amount of the active pharmacological moiety, which needs to be at a concentration of at least 90%.

The biggest problem is the cost. Even after the big pharma have made their zillions on a molecule, yet flog the cost to a point that generics take over.

What do you think? I think it is a personal decision for people.