There are so many alternatives to Big Pharma's "treatment not cure" approach. Mistletoe is one of them. It is recognized in Europe where some health funds provide insurance benefits for treatment. It deserves further study. We can support Medicare and the PBS through the long term by reducing the cost, and natural treatments are critical to that process.
Ivelisse Page’s family has a history of colon cancer. Her father died from the disease in his late thirties. Knowing that she was at higher risk for developing the illness, she followed a healthy lifestyle of organic food and exercise and got regular colonoscopies, yet she also developed colon cancer at the age of 37.
After the diagnoses, she had 15 inches of colon with 28 lymph nodes removed, and later 20% of her liver removed, she writes on her website. But there was one important part of the mainstream oncology treatment that she declined to do – after researching her disease and treatment options herself, she completely refused chemotherapy.
Instead Ivelisse turned to homeopathic remedies and supplements, as well as mistletoe injections – a popular alternative cancer treatment in Europe. Seven years later, she is complete cancer free and is happy to say that she beat IV stage colon cancer that only 11% of patients survive.
Ivelisse’s doctor in Baltimore, Peter Hinderberger, is one of 50 doctors in the U.S. who can prescribe mistletoe treatments. He first heard of this treatment in 1970s and worked in a Switzerland cancer clinic that specialized in it. Today, mistletoe is the main part of his own cancer protocol. According to Baltimore Sun, mistletoe has a substance called viscotoxin. Although poisonous, mistletoe kills specific cells – targets cancer cells while improving patient’s immune system simultaneously.
A 2007 study found mistletoe extract to extend the life-expectancy of patients with ovarian cancer. A European paper from 2001 concluded that mistletoe treatment extended the survival rate of 1,668 patients with all types of cancer by about 40% after studying 27 years worth of research.
Mistletoe: not just for Christmas decorations anymore. PHOTO: By Loadmaster (David R. Tribble), Wikimedia Commons
Will Mistletoe Be Widely Used In The U.S.?
While in some European countries such as Germany, mistletoe therapy is accepted and covered by health insurances (though not the German public one, it is covered by some others), the extract is not approved by the FDA. Ivelisse and Dr. Hinderberger are trying to bring it into mainstream oncology on the U.S.
Suzanne Somers, a well known actress, singer, and author of Knockout, a book about alternative cancer therapies, utilized mistletoe extract injections as part of her natural healing protocol for cancer. But it hasn’t caught on in the U.S. the way it has in Europe just yet.
In 2011, Ivelisse and Jimmy Page founded Believe Big, a nonprofit aimed to educate people on “bridging the gap between conventional and complementary medicine for fighting cancer.” The site also provides resources about mistletoe treatments and how to find physicians who are trained in this therapy.
In 2013, Believe Big started to raise the funds for mistletoe clinical trials at Johns Hopkins Medicine’s Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center. The trials would take 5-8 years to complete and would study patients with different types of cancers. The cost of the trials is high, and the cancer center is still holding fundraisers and a GoFundMe campaign to collect enough money to start the process.
Physicians currently working with mistletoe therapy can be found on BelieveBig.org.