Carrying on from Stella’s thread - I wanted to make some comments about alternative treatments and, especially, provide some balance for the “Truth about Cancer” video.
In the case of pancreatic cancer - and indeed eventually when treating all advanced cancers - I think we would have to accept that conventional medicine does not have many answers, and the ones that it does have are not great; major surgery with lasting consequences - a Whipples is not fun, neither is the more modern variant of PPPD (Pylorus Preserving Pancreato-Dudenectomy) - followed by months of aggressive chemo and all that only means being able to offer the “lucky” 1 in 5 that can be operated on a 50:50 chance of surviving for 5 years and somewhat less chance than that of a meaningful cure.
It is even worse in the 'States where I think people genuinely worry about whether oncologists are truly impartial given incentives from drug companies and, if not insured, facing huge bills for treatment.
Unfortunately I think healthcare in the 'States is rather broken which lends credence to the alternative medicine groups and their theories - and there seem no end of quacks ready to take advantage.
Quick factoids - the single biggest factor in cancer survival in the USA is whether you have health insurance and the most common cause of personal bankruptcy is trying to meet healthcare costs.
Taken with the fact that most average people do not understand clinical research and have real difficulty when someone calling themselves a doctor says that conventional medicine is cheating all their patients and his antineoplaston therapy is what they need for a cure, especially when we’d have to admit that chemotherapy is pretty toxic stuff and not infrequently kills people.
At least conventional doctors try to do research to demonstrate whether their therapies are effective - you can claim that controlled trials or cohort studies are really biased and not much good or that the journals are blind to research not done by big pharma or big well funded institutions but, to paraphrase Churchill, yes RCT’s are the worst way to do research - apart from all the other ways that is.
However a good surgeon and oncologist can explain what the chances are and what the alternatives are.
I know of no piece of reliable evidence that even begins to be honest about the benefit of reducing sugar intake, mega doses of vitamin C, pumpkin juice, apricot kernels, green tea, “detoxification” regimens, misletoe, protein extracts, powdered shark cartilage or any other junk treatment1.
It’s not as up to date as I’d like but I heartily recommend https://www.quackwatch.org/ as a starting point to avoid some of this stuff.
The “Truth about Cancer” video is discussed, rationally, here.
Some other cancer myths are discussed here
1] I made one of these treatments up - at least I think I did, there’s a lot of crazy stuff out there