Natural support for cancer surgery
Q. I have been diagnosed with breast cancer which has spread to other parts of my body. I am going into hospital for surgery to start with, and wonder if there is anything I can do to prepare for it? Also if there is anything natural that might help my body to heal afterwards? A. Pharmacist and homeopath Margo Marrone, founder of The Organic Pharmacy, has a particular interest in this area. Margo supports the medical research charity RAFT, Restoration of Appearance and Function Trust, raft.ac.uk, which Sarah mentioned on her Health page on October 2nd 2016. (That page also has information on nutrition for people with cancer.)
Margo advises the following steps in your situation:
Preparing your body for surgery is key. Margo focuses on three things: boosting the immune system, cleansing the body, and making sure it has all the nutrients (particularly antioxidants) needed to heal, repair and be in the best possible condition.
The Organic Pharmacy 10-Day Detox Kit covers all these. Margo also suggests taking her Immune Tonic, a herbal blend with astragalus, cats claw, elderberry, thyme and plantain. 10 Day Detox Kit/£99; Immune tonic/£11.50 for 50ml, both from theorganicpharmacy.com.
After surgery, Margo suggests three favourite homeopathic remedies depending on your individual constitution:
Phosphorus 200C: for people who have trouble recovering from the effects of anaesthetics. Common symptoms include disorientation, stupor and physical weakness, nausea and vomiting. Being sick after drinking any liquid is also common. Take two pillules (or powder) as soon as you come round after surgery and the same 12 hours later.
Staphysagria 200C: this is used when there is a persistent pain at the site of a surgical incision. It can be used for procedures including breast surgery, prostate, hysterectomy, C-section, episiot0my and other surgery on reproductive organs. It is also useful for surgery involving the stomach, abdomen and rectum, including haemorrhoids and also the use of catheters. Take as for phosphorus (you can combine the two remedies) but continue the staphisagria for several weeks until the wound is healed.
Arnica and Calendula 200C: each of these helps to heal and to reduce post surgery trauma. Arnica is excellent for shock and also helps to reduce bruising and trauma from deep surgery. I may help prevent or reduce blood clots post surgery, and reduce soreness and swelling. Calendula is known as an antiseptic, which keeps wounds free of infection. Take two combination pills as soon as possible after surgery, up to six times a day to speed healing and help reduce the risk of infection.
The Organic Pharmacy Surgery Kit/£45, contains all these plus some other helpful products.
Margo recommends applying rosehip oil directly to the scar. The Organic Pharmacy is donating £3 to RAFT for every full size bottle they sell. Virgin Cold Pressed Rose Hip Oil/£29.95 for 30ml, from theorganicpharmacy.com.