Nova Health Naturopathic Centre Blog

True Health and Well Being

Intravenous Vitamin C for Cancer February 7, 2011

Filed under: cancer — novahealthnaturopathic @ 3:48 pm

Intravenous vitamin C is an effective and well-established cancer therapy that has demonstrated effectiveness in treating cancer for decades, despite being dismissed by some medical experts.  As indicated by many studies, this therapy prolongs survival, improves quality of life, and reduces adverse effects of conventional cancer treatment (Integrative Cancer Therapies, 2004; 3:294-300).

Of the studies looking at the anti-cancer effects of intravenous vitamin C, the most well-known is a paper published in the Canadian Medical Association. The study examined cases of advanced terminal cancer and found that high-dose intravenous vitamin C resulted in unexpectedly long term remission rates.  For example, one of the case studies showed that a patient with advance kidney cancer that had spread throughout her body, was cancer-free at a one year follow-up assessment.  Using conventional treatment options, such results only occur in 1% of cases (CMAJ. 2006;174:937-42). These findings of this study support the use of high-dose intravenous vitamin C therapy in cancer treatment.

How does vitamin work to fight cancer? Part of the answer to thisquestion involves the amounts of the vitamin used. At a large dose (achieved only intravenously) vitamin C can induce oxidative damage and spontaneous death to the cancer cells. Very high concentrations of vitamin C (intravenous doses of 14 000 μM/l vs 220 μM/l – achieved orally) are selectively toxic to cancer cells, but do not harm normal cells (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2005, 102:13604-9). This selective toxicity occurs because this high dose of vitamin C increases levels of hydrogen peroxide (a chemical that destroys cancer cells). Cancer cells are vulnerable to this chemical whereas normal cells are not (Histol Histopathol, 1997, 12:525-35). This means cancer cells are destroyed while healthy cells remain unharmed.

Some oncologists postulate that vitamin C decreases the effectiveness of chemotherapy.  There has been no clinical evidence that shows patients given vitamin C and chemotherapy together fare worse than those not receiving the vitamin.  In fact the complete opposite is true as demonstrated by all clinical studies.  A paper that reviewed 71 scientific studies found that antioxidants actually enhance the effects of chemotherapeutic agents (J. of Oncol. 1999; 31:1201-1078).

The evidence of the anti-cancer effects of intravenous vitamin C needs to be re-examined. Seek out your options with a health care practitioner knowledgeable in complementary cancer treatments with scientific research and clinical trials to verify its effectiveness.

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