Complementary Alternative Medicine - CAM
By Rosario Rando.
Today, alternative and controversial cancer treatments are crossing into western medicine and becoming the “norm” as patients become more involved in the decision-making of their care. Patients affected by cancer today have many commonly known treatments but there are also more radical and out of the ordinary treatments as used today. By adding complementary alternative medicine, also known as CAM, the patient is able to complement their care with many other medical approaches. The patient can choose practices and products that are not basic standardized care based on scientific evidence, like chemotherapy, radiation, biological therapy, and surgery. Patients have these options more readily available now than in the past. These options are a breakthrough in cancer care both in good ways and bad ways.
The National Cancer Institute at the National Institute of Health (2005) classify CAM generally in two distinctive types of approach: Complementary Medicine, used along with standard medical treatments, and Alternative Medicine, used in place of standard medical treatment. There is, however, a third method of approach that promises the best results by combining standard medicine along with CAM practices, and it is known as Integrative Medicine. It consists of a total approach to care that involves the patient’s mind, body, and spirit (National Cancer Institute at the National Institute of Health, 2005). This method produces the best results and is extremely promising in cancer care patients.
Patients today are more involved in decision-making on how to cure cancer so the use of CAM is becoming more common. This is not discouraged by oncologists though it must be important to notice in the use of CAM, the effects are not guaranteed. In fact, this treatment, gives patients a way to manage stress, nausea, pain, or other symptoms or side effects. It is natural to expect that...