Patients should be warned about the dangers of chemotherapy after new research published in The Lancet Oncology showed that chemo kills up to 50% of cancer patients in some hospitals.
For the first time researchers looked at the numbers of cancer patients who died within 30 days of starting chemotherapy, which indicates that the medication is the cause of death, rather than the cancer.
Almost 1,400 patients with either breast or lung cancer died in England in 2014 within a month of being given chemotherapy, roughly 8.4% of lung cancer patients, and 2.4% of breast cancer patients.
In some hospitals the figure was far higher. In Milton Keynes Hospital the death rate for lung cancer treatment was 50.9%, although it was based on a smaller number of patients.
Deaths of lung cancer patients from chemotherapy were also far higher than the national average in Blackpool, Coventry, Derby, South Tyneside and Surrey and Sussex, according to the research.
At Lancashire Teaching Hospitals the 30 day mortality rate was 28% for palliative chemotherapy for lung cancer.
Palliative treatments are given to “extend life” or “improve quality of life”–two highly debatable claims considering that the few weeks or months of extra life that a patient might get usually just involves extra suffering.
What’s worse is that many patients getting palliative care think they are getting curative treatments
Four years ago, I reported on an American study, which found that at least two-thirds of patients with terminal cancer believed they were getting potentially curative chemotherapy, even though the treatment was only palliative, because their doctors didn’t explain the difference.
The British study looked at more than 23,000 women with breast cancer and nearly 10,000 men with non-small cell lung cancer who underwent chemotherapy in 2014. Of those treated 1,383 died within 30 days.
The researchers also found that there were significant differences in survival for older people and those in poorer health.
They advised doctors to be more careful in selecting patients for treatment where it could do more harm than good.
According to the authors of the study by Public Health England and Cancer Research UK, “patients dying within 30 days after beginning treatment [with chemotherapy] are unlikely to have gained the survival or palliative benefits of the treatment, and in view of the side-effects sometimes caused… are more likely to have suffered harm”.
“I think it’s important to make patients aware that there are potentially life threatening downsides to chemotherapy. And doctors should be more careful about who they treat with chemotherapy.” — Professor David Dodwell, Institute of Oncology, St James Hospital, Leeds, UK.
Here’s a surprising statement from one of the study’s authors, Dr. Jem Rashbass:
“The easiest way not to kill your patients with chemotherapy is not to give it to anyone,
and that is clearly wrong.”
Ahhhh! That quote started off so well, but then after the comma it took a horrible turn.
Friends, that statement pretty much sums up the fully indoctrinated (ahem, brainwashed) cancer industry mentality. They truly believe it is wrong not to give cancer patients chemotherapy, even when their research shows that chemo kills.
Source and references: Chris Beat Cancer; The Lancet Oncology; The Telegraph; The Guardian