Cancer has the ability to suppress the function of and evade destruction by the immune system. Cancer can also co-opt the immune system and use it to further grow, invade and metastasize. For many years conventional medicine largely ignored the immune system and the effects that conventional therapies had on it. However, in the past decade research in this area has grown. The use of immunotherapies is now commonplace in conventional medicine.
One of the main reasons people seek out integrative CancerCare is because they want to help support their immune system while undergoing conventional treatment. Conventional therapies such as surgery, radiation and chemotherapy can be hard on the immune system and weaken it. There are pharmaceutical medications that are given during conventional treatments to help support the immune system. Even with these medications, in some instances, conventional therapy must be halted to let the body rest and give the immune system time to recover.
Many naturopathic therapies have been found to support immune function. Naturopathic therapies such as supplements, IV’s, injection therapies, diet and exercise have been found to have a profound impact on immune function. It is important to keep the immune system robust which may allow it to better able to identify cancer cells. This is why immune support is an integral component of CancerCare and why we address this aspect of health with our patients. However, immune support is not indicated in all situations which is why it is important to work with a member of our naturopathic CancerCare team to determine what treatments may benefit you.