Iscador/Mistletoe for breast cancer treatment?


Question from Cath: Can you please tell us what you know about Iscador/Mistletoe? I was recently told that "Iscador ... (has) been used in Europe since the 1920s and roughly 70 percent of all breast cancers treated in Germany use Iscador as part of their treatment." Please comment.
Answers - Gary Deng These agents have indeed been used for quite a while in Europe. The mechanism appears to be mobilization and stimulation of the immune system when they were given as injections. But I am not aware of any studies that show their efficacy as a sole agent in cancer treatment. In addition, the injectable form is not readily available in this country. There are many similar agents used in other countries for breast cancer or other cancer treatments. Because the criteria to approve these agents differ among the countries, some may be used more widely in one country than another. That by itself does not mean they are definitively helpful. If you want to find more information about these two agents or some of the other herbs or supplements, we have made a web page summarizing the research that has been done on these supplements. You can go to that page at www.mskcc.org/aboutherbs.

On Wednesday, July 18, 2007, our Ask-the-Expert Online Conference was called Vitamins and Herbal Supplements. Gary Deng, M.D., Ph.D. and moderator Beth Baughman DuPree, M.D., F.A.C.S. answered your questions about how to safely and sensibly incorporate vitamins and supplements into your diet.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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