fototip/ShutterstockDisease cures and treatments are often found on accident, or in places one may not suspect. The cure for polio was found thanks to cows (it wouldn’t be the last time cows proved to be medical wizards). Penicillin was discovered thanks to mold contamination, and Viagra was originally supposed to be a heart medication.
However, not all unconventional routes lead to success in the medical field. In fact, a new study has found that seeking alternative therapy treatment for cancer actually doubles your risk of death.
The new study, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, took a look at conventional cancer treatments (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation) versus alternative therapy (treatment conducted by nonmedical personnel) in terms of efficacy. People who chose alternative therapy had a risk of death two and a half times higher than their conventional treatment-using counterparts.
Conventional treatment, although incredibly taxing on the human body, has proven results and billions of dollars in funding backing it. Frequently, people choose alternative treatment methods due to anecdotal evidence, stories of success not necessarily backed deep research, according to Dr. Skyler Johnson, the study’s lead author.
The study analyzed survival data from 280 patients who chose alternative therapy and 560 patients who chose conventional treatments.
When dealing with something as serious as cancer, trust the experts. The medical field has produced some incredible cancer treatment breakthroughs over the years, and it would be a disservice to years of progress if you risk something unproven.