In 1978 I was diagnosed with a malignant form of lymphoma. My story began long before 1978, and some of this history is directly related to my contracting cancer. As a child I constantly had throat problems. My resistance was poor and I was prone to strep throat, tonsillitis, colds and flu. I was given the standard inoculations as a child and I ate the standard 1950’s American “balanced” diet which included lots of dairy, fats, sugars, soft drinks and junk food. In response to my frequent throat infections, my tonsils were removed when I was in the 4th grade.
In the 5th grade I began to have a severe problem with my right elbow joint. It swelled and became quite painful at irregular intervals. This problem would persist for a few weeks at a time and then would depart as mysteriously as it had arrived. Over time, the frequency, duration, and intensity increased to the point where something had to be done.
I visited an orthopedic surgeon. X-rays indicated a cyst which was eating out the bone inside the joint of my right elbow. Surgery was performed to scrape out the joint, and bone was grafted from my right hip to fill the hole eaten out by the cyst. This was never diagnosed as a cancer and the problem seemed to go away with the surgery.
My diet remained unchanged and so did my general health. I continued to suffer a high incidence of colds, sore throats and flu. In about 1975 I began to have a similar swelling and soreness in my left wrist. As in the 5th grade, it came and went. I had to wrap it in an ace bandage and could not move my wrist so much as a fraction of an inch without intense pain. At first, the problem surfaced every 4 months or so and would last a few weeks. When it became worse, I consulted a physician. I was diagnosed as having gout. The “cure” prescribed by my doctor proved to be ineffectual, so I consulted another physician. I told him my history and the gout diagnosis, and he confirmed the diagnosis. His “cure” was similarly ineffective. By sheer coincidence, I met another physician (in 1978), who took one look at my severely distended wrist (the size of a tennis ball), and insisted that I check immediately into the hospital. A biopsy was performed on my wrist, and the diagnosis, confirmed by two independent laboratories, was a malignant form of lymphoma in the bones and lymph system. A second biopsy indicated that I had lymphoma in my lymph nodes in my left armpit. I was subjected to a battery of tests to see if I had cancer in other locations. Dye was injected into the lymph nodes in my feet and pictures taken on a CAT scan. I drank various radioactive concoctions and again had images taken. I had taken so many radioactive isotopes that I was able to pin the needle on a “geiger counter” located in the nuclear medicine waiting room. I was a pretty hot number!
My left wrist bone was almost totally consumed by the cancer and I was unable to move it. It was the consistency of soft mush. I was given a series of radiation treatments to my left wrist and arm. This reduced the mass so that it appeared more normal, but the wrist remained sore and weak. The radiation burned all hair from my arm and caused the skin to dry and crack. This was followed by one treatment of chemotherapy, which consisted of Prednisone, Oncovin, and one or two other chemicals, the names of which I have long forgotten. The chemotherapy produced a three day migraine accompanied by nausea. I was given codeine to help alleviate the pain in my head and wrist. During treatment I was given minimum feedback or explanation despite my numerous questions and obvious interest in treatment and side effects.
It was at this point in my treatment that I discovered FACT. I consumed books, networked with recovered cancer patients, contacted clinics, obtained literature and attended the annual FACT convention in Detroit. I promptly put all conventional treatment on hold pending further investigation into the alternatives. I was simultaneously encouraged and petrified by my discoveries. My background as an engineer had trained me to investigate symptoms and trace them back to the root cause(s). The alternatives made so much sense to me. On the other hand, I was scared of veering from the advice of medical professionals who had had years of scientific and medical training. My life was at stake! This left me in a severe emotional quandary as I sat on the fence and gathered additional information. Nonetheless, I decided to take responsibility for all future decisions as to modes of treatment. It was my body and my life. No longer would I relinquish these decisions to others and follow blindly.
I wrote out a three-page list of questions and made an appointment with my oncologist. I gave him a 90-minute exam and insisted on clear answers to my many questions. He was patient and accommodating. By the end of the interview, I was leaning strongly toward alternative treatments. When I told him this, he became very defensive and upset. He related examples of three or four members of his immediate family who had died of cancer and how he had done everything in his power to save them. He would not consider these “so-called alternatives” which he considered quackery. His track record (which he claimed was above average), helped me to decide in favor of alternative treatment. Two years after leaving his care and adhering to metabolic therapy, I was offered a promotion by my company on the condition that I obtain a clean bill of health from my original oncologist. I visited him and after a thorough examination, he declared me totally free of cancer. What amazed me was that he never once expressed any curiosity as to how I had done it! Amazing.
I began my metabolic program by following the Kelley plan and followed it to the letter. I consulted him totally via mail, through fluid samples, a massive questionnaire, medical reports, etc. After about 6 months I decided to attend the John Richardson Clinic in Berkeley, California. His program had many elements in common with Kelley’s, and I discovered that most of the successful alternatives I had become acquainted with shared many similarities. Let me suggest a few of the common principles which I followed in rebuilding the immune system and in reestablishing the integrity of the body.
- Whole, natural foods, largely in their raw, organic state, were used abundantly. This included vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, etc. All additives, preservatives, refined sugar, white flour, adulterated meats, soft drinks and junk food were avoided.
- The body needed cleansing inside and out to assist in the elimination of waste products and toxins.Various methods were used including high enemas, flushes and purges.
- Liberal quantities of freshly produced carrot juice were consumed. I typically drank
1-2 quarts daily, usually a combination of carrot juice mixed with celery juice. I would often add other juices such as spinach or beet. This was an important part of the program.
- Supplements were added to my diet to help correct my specific deficiencies. I took pancreatic enzymes, liver supplements, bone supplements, and numerous others. These supplements must be tailored to the specific needs of each individual patient. The assistance of a knowledgeable professional is indicated.
- A “take charge attitude” helps reduce stress and improve attitude. These factors are shown to make a significant difference in a patient’s ability to recuperate. Imagery, relaxation, and a positive outlook seem to assist the body in restoring normal functioning of the various glands and organs.
- Exercise as appropriate for the condition of the patient is important. The goal is to get oxygen and blood pumping to nourish cells and assist in elimination. It is not appropriate for very sick persons to wear themselves out. Moderation is in order.
- The assistance of a professional health practitioner well-versed in biological alternatives is highly recommended. FACT is the best source for guidance in selecting a practitioner. A tested and proven practitioner can keep you on the right track.
- Stay involved. Hippocrates said, “Physician, heal thyself.” It is your body and your life. Your feedback combined with an appropriate practitioner is a good combination.
I’d like to comment on one more piece to the puzzle. I am convinced that emotional problems and severe emotional trauma often play a significant role in causing cancer. I believe this was very true in my case. I have worked very hard to eliminate suppressed anger and resentment from my life. This is why I feel so strongly about people getting involved in their own treatment. Somehow, when you become actively involved, attitudes change and this affects the body’s chemical and electrical processes in a very positive manner.
I have not had any recurrence of cancer as of this date (1999). My wrist bone has grown back completely and functions fairly normally, though it remains somewhat deformed and weak from the devastation wrought by cancer and radiation treatments. Since full recovery, I sometimes stray from my diet and revert to foods and habits that are not conducive to health. When I do not feel well, or if my wrist hurts a lot (sometimes due to weather changes), I clean up my act and go back to a healthier diet and follow the steps outlined above. Of course, the best course is to stay on a health-giving diet all the time. I have learned that my body has some inherent weaknesses, and that going back to the standard junk food diet leads to problems. I also find that my health is impaired during periods of severe emotional stress, especially in conjunction with a poor diet.
The good news is that I now have confidence that I can rebuild my body’s health, defenses, and immune system, thus going to the source, rather than attacking symptoms. That, in essence, is what FACT is all about.