Saturday, November 22, 2008

Aloe vera, milk thistle & OxyContin

I got an email from my doctor at The Klinik today. She gave me a regimen to follow to prevent or lessen the side effects of the radiation and chemo:

Aloe vera every day for gargling and drinking
Make a high-concentrated chamomile tea extract
and gargle several times a day and clean the mouth
Boswelia 400 mg 3x2 tab
Alpha liponic acid 600 mg
Sodium selenite 300 microgramm
Vitamin B complex
Milk thistle 120 mg 3x a day

The radiation oncologist here in Los Angeles says he'll give me prescriptions for lidocaine to numb my burnt throat, and Vicodin and OxyContin for pain.


That's my point.

My doctors here would never prescribe what my doctor at The Klinik did, even if they knew it worked.

Why? The suggested regimen from The Klinik contains natural, holistic supplements that are not controlled and sold by the pharmaceutical companies.

It basically comes down to this: If the pharmaceutical companies can't control it, they can't make huge profits, and therefore would never endorse such a regimen.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Six weeks

On Monday I go get fitted for a mask. It's a mask that covers my face and protects my head from the radiation that will be burning into my neck in order to kill those cancer cells in my lymph node.

The doctors here and at The Klinik in Germany agreed that I need low-level radiation, ten minutes a day, five days a week, for six weeks. And six weeks of chemo. I can't say I'm looking forward to it. They tell me the first three weeks will be okay. But on the back half, my throat will be so sore that I won't be able to eat solid food. There goes the thirty pounds I'd worked so hard to put back on. They keep telling me that I have to keep swallowing-- no matter how painful-- and drink as many calories as I can, no matter how long it takes to get it down.

A lot of patients get a feeding tube, but I refused because sometimes people who use tubes actually forget how to swallow and have to go to therapy to learn to swallow again.

I don't have time for that.

It's funny-- no, it's not funny at all really. It's frustrating and infuriating that when they first found the cancer cells, the first thing out of the radiation oncologist's mouth was that I needed full-blown radiation and two nine-week sessions of chemotherapy.

Because that's what it says in their medical books.

They don't think out of the box. I immediately said, "No. I won't do full-blown radiation."

And then my doctor at The Klinik looked at everything and spoke with my doctors here, and suddenly they all agreed:

Low-level radiation.

Ten minutes a day.

Five days a week for six weeks.

Chemo for only six weeks.

See? That gets to the heart of the entire issue. What if I didn't have the second opinion? What if I didn't have a pioneering doctor who's not bound by tradition and a medical and pharmaceutical establishment?

Well, lots of people don't have that option. They have no choice but to follow the initial advice, which is “cut and burn and radiate and poison.”

Most people don't have that option, And it's out there!

I start the treatments on December first and finish on January ninth.

It will take a couple of months before everything is back to normal.

I'm waiting to hear from my doctor at The Klinik. She’'s going to give me a program to follow that the doctors here don't believe in. When I get it, I'll let you know what it is.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Do or die

"If you don't do radiation, you're looking at death."

That's a quote from the radiation oncologist I met with yesterday.

Undergo radiation for the cancer cells in one of my lymph nodes or die.

He was very matter of fact. If you don't do it, you'll die.

That's the third doctor in the United States who told me that I would die if I didn't do what he suggested. The doctor did admit that he and the others don't know all that much about the cyberknife treatment they've been using at The Klinik in Germany for the last 10 years, and that they used on my throat cancer last December.

Then the doctor scoped me, for no other reason than to see what the cyberknifing looked like.

He was blown away. The look on his face was almost funny.

He said, "Wow, I see where they blasted your tumour away. There's nothing there. No sign of the tumour.

“That's... amazing!"

Then he asked me about the side effects from the cyberknife.

I told him that there have been no side effects at all.

That was when he told me about the side effects I could expect from the low-level radiation.


Big difference.

If I do the low-level radiation, it will be one ten-minute session a day, five days a week, for six weeks. There should be no side effects for the first two to three weeks. Then he said I'll get the worst sore throat known to man-- so sore that I won't be able to eat solid foods and will even have a difficult time with liquids. He said I can expect to lose thirty or forty pounds.

The key, the doctor said, is to keep swallowing and eating and drinking, no matter how painful.

(My business partner bet me a hundred dollars that it won't stop me from talking.)

I've been in touch with the doctors at The Klinik, and this morning I got an email from The Klinik's cyberknife doctor He's waiting for the PT scans and report to arrive, and then he'll give me his opinion on whether I should be cyberknifed or go through the "low-level, non-invasive and very focused" radiation treatment.

I'll know more Monday or Tuesday.

Thursday, November 13, 2008



I've been in constant contact with my doctor at The Klinik in Germany, and my doctor here in LA has also been talking to my doctor at The Klinik. The reason for all this communication is to get all the information that's available about the various treatments that are available.

And then I'll decide which one I want to do.

To bring you up to date, a year after my first cancer treatments, cancer cells were found in one of my lymph nodes. There's no tumour or mass, just cancer cells that are probably a "drain-off" from the original tumour that was removed at The Klinik last December.

It's not unexpected, but it means another slog through the same treatments.

Tomorrow I meet with a radiation oncologist.

Because of where the lymph node is located, I might be able to undergo a low-level, non-invasive and very focused radiation treatment that would kill the cancer cells in that one lymph node and any undetectable micro-cancer cells that might be in the surrounding lymph nodes.

In any case, I start my first of two chemotherapy "sessions" next week. Each session lasts nine weeks.

After the first session, I'll either get the cyberknife or the low, non-invasive and very focused radiation treatment. Then, another nine weeks of chemotherapy.

I will not have to be operated on, which is good because that would have left my neck indented-- or as they call it, "collapsed."

Anyway, while I wait for all the info, I've gone back on my cancer diet, which is basically eating like a gerbil. All organic veggies, wild caught fish, and organic chicken.

No red meat, no sugar, no coffee.

And no vodka.

I'll let you know the outcome of my appointment with the radiation oncologist as soon as I can.

Meanwhile, that picture up top is from a computer printout I just got back from The Klinik.

That's me at the moment I was getting zapped by the cyberknife.

Cool, huh?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Yes, there were cancer cells in the lymph node

 First of all, thanks to thank everyone for your good thoughts and prayers. I truly do appreciate all the support. So here's the deal so far:

The biopsy came back and yes, there were cancer cells in the lymph node.

Remember, we always knew that there were cancer cells still in my body. That's why the Erbitux and Thalidomide. I've sent my latest scan and biopsy results to my doctor at The Klinik in Germany. At this point, all I know is that I will have to do some type of chemotherapy and I'll lose all my hair again-- which is fine; it was getting too long, anyway.

My doctor here in Los Angeles mentioned cutting it out, then chemo and radiation, which is the traditional American procedure. Today my doctor in Germany called and said nothing of cutting anything out, or traditional radiation. She hasn't seen the scan or biopsy results yet, but she has talked to my doctor here and I also e-mailed her and told her everything I knew, so she has enough information. She suggested the cyberknife, which is a very focused, pinpoint laser radiation beam that only radiates the necessary area and kills the cancer cells.

I’ll talk to her on Sunday and she’ll tell me what to do.

It's been really hard to concentrate with all this happening, but I've been working on scripts and putting together a live album that my brothers and I recorded in 1978.

That's all I know for now. Sorry I didn't get to this on Wednesday. That's when I found out the biopsy results.