Cancer Is Not a Disease

I read an odd article on the internet recently, suggesting that cancer is not a disease. The article is entitled “Dispelling the disease myth“. I really wouldn’t have bothered if it hadn’t been written by a colleague of mine, Dr. Thomas Lodi. He is an oncologist and runs an alternative cancer treatment center in Arizona. Among the treatments he offers cancer patients are IPT low dose chemotherapy and intravenous vitamin C.

I am not an oncologist and I don’t have any experience with these therapies. However, I believe they are not supported by many scientific studies. They were not offered to me when I had my testicular cancer some years ago. Luckily, I responded well to surgery and conventional chemotherapy. I am very grateful to my oncologist, who uses conventional methods and relies on scientific studies when recommending treatment.

Cancer is not a disease

I could have been unlucky. I could have been diagnosed with cancer that does not respond to currently available medical therapy or surgery. Then, in my desperation, I would probably have done an internet search, and who knows, I might have found the “Oasis of Healing” center in Arizona. Reaching out for the last string of hope, I would probably have seen their alternative methods as my possible route back to health. The last-minute cure that would make it possible for me to spend a few more years with my wife and children. I assure you, they would have made a few bucks from me before I died.

The purpose of my writing is not to criticize Dr. Lodi’s integrative approach to the treatment of patients or healing as he chooses to call it. However, when doctors, in the name of their profession, write things on the internet that is read by thousands of people, tweeted on and liked on social networks all over the world, it has to make sense. Doctors are educated people. People listen to them. The internet is a very powerful tool and health professionals have to use it carefully and with responsibility.

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Is Cancer a Disease or Not?

Dr. Lodi’s main message is that cancer is not a disease, but an “extraordinary effort by the body to keep us alive“. In order to explain what he means, he chooses an analogy.  He compares the situation to a patient with high blood pressure. That’s where it all starts to go terribly wrong.

He writes:” If I go in to see a doctor and he takes my blood pressure and my blood pressure is, by whatever current standards, considered elevated, and let’s say this happens on three separate occasions, the doctor will tell me, “You have high blood pressure. We have to lower it because here is all the data that shows that people with this disease have a higher incidence of stroke and heart attack, etc.” Okay sounds logical. So I buy into this myth and I start taking a drug that is going to lower my blood pressure…. What studies now show is that when people follow this course of action they are much more susceptible to getting all kinds of cancers. People given antihypertensive medications for a long time, have a higher incidence of cancer in all organs.”

It has been known for many years that high blood pressure is a risk factor for cancer. This association was presented in a recently published large observational study. However, a causative relationship has never been proven. Indeed, it is possible that high blood pressure and cancer have the same underlying risk factors, both may be related to smoking, the metabolic syndrome and unhealthy lifestyle in general. No scientific study has shown that medical treatment of high blood pressure increases the risk of cancer, as Dr Lodi seems to be suggesting.

Next Dr. Lodi reflects on the pathophysiology of hypertension.

“Well the blood pressure is elevated because the arteries are blocked. Because of my lifestyle, I’ve accumulated deposits in my arteries, and my body knows that if I’m going to stay alive I’ve got to get blood to all the organs of my body, and so in its innate wisdom it increases pressure to get blood and oxygen to all the system. So is that a problem? No, it’s saving my life: It’s keeping me alive! So the answer is not to artificially via a pharmaceutical product dilate those arteries and lower the blood pressure because I’m not accomplishing anything long-lasting with that approach. And I’m also removing what the body knew needed to happen for survival. You see, high blood pressure is not a disease; it’s the body’s effort to keep us alive. The real problem is the plugging of the arteries. And this is the true cause of any so-called disease and the root of what needs to be addressed.”

Dr. Lodi seems to believe that high blood pressure is caused by blocked or plugged arteries. However, most people with high blood pressure don’t have deposits in their arteries. He even arguments that high blood pressure is the body’s way to improve blood flow to vital organs, through the plugged arteries. Every doctor knows that this is completely wrong. Some might even call Lodi’s arguments complete rubbish, I would not blame them. The cause of high blood pressure is definitively not plugged or blocked arteries. However, as most doctors are aware of, high blood pressure is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Treatment of high blood pressure has been proven to decrease the risk of heart attack and stroke. So, Dr. Lodi’s analogy does not seem to make any sense at all. If he does not make this right, what should we think about his theories on cancer and cancer treatment?

I believe Dr. Lodi’s main message is that the risk of cancer can be influenced by lifestyle. Food, in particular, is important. I don’t disagree with him on that. However, I don’t agree with him that cancer is not a disease and that there are no unpreventable factors, genetic or unknown, that predispose to the development of cancer.

In the introductory video in his website, Dr. Lodi says: “I love cancer. The reason I love cancer is because, in the vast majority of people with cancer, it is the most powerful divine tap on the shoulder“.

I wonder, if cancer is not a disease and only a tap on the shoulder, there is no disease at all. If you follow Dr. Lodi’s recommendations on how to live your life, you will either die of accident or old age, because there will be no disease. However, if Dr. Lodi wants people to believe his theories, he certainly will have to reconsider his analogies.

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DebC
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DebC

Cancer is surely Not a ‘Dis-Ease’. , A dis-ease considering that it is a mild case of an unbalanced state in the body somewhere that needs to be corrected . With this unbalanced state, it eventually wrecks havoc on an organ within. Cancer is nowhere near being a ‘dis-ease’ but rather being a predator that becomes worse off, feeding off of your body somewhere within., like a Leech, Parasite, Fungus, that will feed off of you.

Axel F Sigurdsson
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Axel F Sigurdsson

A disease is “a pathological condition of a part, organ, or system of an organism resulting from various causes, such as infection, genetic defect, or environmental stress, and characterized by an identifiable group of signs or symptoms”.
Cancer fulfills all the criteria of a disease. You can also call it a malady or an illness. Indeed, as pointed out by Siddhartha Mukherjee, the author of the great book “The emperor of all maladies” cancer is not one disease, it is many diseases. I don´t think we gain anything by calling it something else.

Michelle Tyler
Guest

Its a very good post. The information provided by you is really very good and helpful for me. Keep sharing good information..
cancer center chicago

Dilon
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Dilon

So a body that maintains a higher blood pressure is not a reaction by the body to maintain function? It is never due to material that hardens and clogs the circulatory system (you called this rubbish)? You gave another causal option but it is confusing me. It seems you believe the body increases blood pressure to signal to a physician to initiate treatment of the patient as a high risk cardiovascular disease? I had no idea the body evolved these unique sets of functional communication with primary care providers… The internet is powerful. It allows you to knock a physician… Read more »

Grace Leep
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Grace Leep

Cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes… are symptoms. Dr. Lodi treats causes – something you can’t learn from the medical school model – dictated by big pharm. Dr. Lodi went outside the box and found answers. You followed the herd. Keep your fingers crossed that your treatments keep you “healthy” and if not, I’m sure, your oncologist will be more than happy to take your insurance money and go on another vacation while you are given “the cure”.

Axel F Sigurdsson
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Axel F Sigurdsson

Hi Grace

Thanks for sharing your view. I’ve nothing against doctors who think out of the box. That’s how we make many of our discoveries. But I believe in science and evidence based medicine.

Don’t know whether you’ve read Tim Minchin’s poem called Storm:

Why take drugs
When herbs can solve it?
Why use chemicals
When homeopathic solvents
Can resolve it?
It’s time we all return-to-live
With natural medical alternatives.”..

…By definition”, I begin
“Alternative Medicine”, I continue
“Has either not been proved to work,
Or been proved not to work.
You know what they call “alternative medicine”
That’s been proved to work?
Medicine.”

Karen Quartzstone
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Karen Quartzstone

cancer is 100% poisoning and malnourishment and if you haven’t figured that out, you are delusional and nescient because you have not studied the simple reality. just because you can’t open your eyes doesn’t mean it’s a mystery to everyone 😉

ankur bhatia
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ankur bhatia

Few clarifications Dr Lodi never recommends that we do not treat the condition. When he says Hypertension is a body’s remedial condition he means that it is emergency measure to keep you alive. This cannot continue and needs to be treated not by medicines but by changing lifestyle which is a root cause. Genetic factors do influence diseases but we can say Genes are like bullets in loaded Gun and lifestyle is a trigger. So, if we have correct lifestyle trigger will not be pulled. Medical world who criticises practioners like Dr Lodi have never clinically tested the results which… Read more »

Dave143
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Dave143

A pathogen is something that casues disease. Cancer is the end result or part of the process of pathogenic activity and should not be construed as a disease but a symptom of a disease or more appropriately a condition. In recent years obesity is increasingly being seen as a disease but it is not – highly processed foods that are sourced from highly cultivated and hybridised specae – the food chain bears no resemblance to what could even be slightly regarded as healthful, nutritious or sustaining but neverthertheless obesity is gradually being served up as a disease! Pure irrationality –… Read more »

Kathleen
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Kathleen

I agree with Dr Lodi. You are a typical Doctor, thinking you know more than us, thinking we should all take what ever toxic pill, you and big pharma are pushing. Doctors pushing toxic drugs are dangerous. I am dealing with cancer after being pushed and prescribed drugs, which i now find out are carcinogenic!!! You guys are scared of Dr lodi, and others in functional medicine who are actually getting results, as apposed to you guys who are just managing disease, with toxic cancer causing drugs. America is the sickest country in the world, thanks to all the doctors… Read more »

AmandaTrebiano
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AmandaTrebiano

Dr. Lodi is NOT an oncologist, NOR is he a licensed MD in Arizona. He’s a fraud. He never finished medical school.

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