Rectal Cancer is one of the most common types of cancer not only in Canada but all over the world.
According to the Canadian Cancer Society 2022 statistics, as many as 24,300 new cases were diagnosed in 2022, and this number represented 10% of all the new cancer cases in Canada this year. 9,400 cases died of this cancer in 2022, which represented 11% of all cancer-related deaths. https://cancer.ca/en/cancer-information/cancer-types/colorectal/statistics#:~:text=It%20is%20estimated%20that%20about,40%20will%20die%20from%20it.
Mistletoe is a natural health product that is used in some countries as a complementary natural product for cancer care. It is available in different forms such as oral liquid (Tincture), and injectables. Mistletoe has many functions such as boosting the immune system, stimulating the NK cells (Natural Killer Cells), and stimulating the production of Interleukins.
The topic of today’s article Rectal Cancer and Mistletoe will highlight the findings of recent research on using the Mistletoe for patients with Rectal Cancer.
This Research was done in the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery, Department of Surgery, Gil Medical
Center, Gachon University College of Medicine, South Korea, and published in World Journal of Surgical Oncology in 2021 https://wjso.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12957-021-02293-4
In this research, 52 Newly Diagnosed Patients with locally advanced Rectal Cancer were treated at this center with the standard Neoadjuvant chemo-radiaiton therapy therapy before the Surgery, between January 2018, and July 2020. During this research, the patients were divided into 2 groups, one group received the standard Chemoradiation therapy, and the other group received the same treatment of Chemoradiation, in addition to Mistletoe injections. 15 Patients received the Mistletoe injections and 37 did not receive it. After the treatment, the two treatment groups were similar with no statistical differences regarding the treatment-related toxicities (such as proctitis, diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting), however, after surgery, the group of patients who had the Mistletoe showed a higher Pathological Complete Response (PCR) ( 53.3% versus 21.6%) P value of 0.044, and T downstaging (86.7% versus 43.2%) P= 0.004.
So, in conclusion, it was seen that the addition of Mistletoe to the standard care of Advanced Rectal Cancers Can be promising, but this needs to be validated with more research and on a much higher number of patients.
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