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Do It


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  • Corinna Loo

    This is an interesting article. I've never seen "chemophobia" as something so rampant that it needed to be stamped out though. Most times, patients think that it is the only option.

    If anything, the initial desire to want to know and understand more about potentially damaging treatment options and look for alternatives could never hurt.

    • Georgina Wilcox

      Let me try and reply to your post more accurately. Basically, I disagree.

      I think that "chemophobia" (although I wouldn't necessarily call it that myself) is actually disturbingly prevalent in our society. I'm not saying that looking for alternatives can hurt, but if people are too be more trusting of an alternative treatment because it has the words "traditional", "natural" or "drug-free" in the description somewhere, that can be very dangerous. When cancer patients turn to homeopathy instead of following the advice of the oncologists, people die. This is serious.

      But yes, by all means -- do your research. Just make sure you do it well, and understand that there are drugs in "alternative" medicine as well, and risks to not following your doctor's advice.

      • Corinna Loo

        You are totally right. I think it just becomes problematic once treatment options become "good" versus "bad". There is a lot of middle ground options that shouldn't be overlooked! Some places out there offer integrative therapies like the Simms/Mann UCLA Center. They work with your oncologist when providing patients with holistic support in addition to chemo. That way there is some comfort in knowing that you "pharmacutically" and "naturally" have all your bases covered.

        On a separate note, I wouldn't want to infer that a cautious approach (and this probably isn't how you define chemophobia) to incredibly serious treatments read as scientifically illiterate, that's all. It's just a thought.

    • Georgina Wilcox

      It is interesting -- I think there is a strange disconnect in the way our society regards science. Often imagery and language to suggest "science" is used positively for advertising, e.g. look at this shoe which was linked to from the Nike main page:,pdp,ctr-inline/cid-1/pid-654092/pgid-654094 The shoe has an "engineered mesh" and "featured technology" and other science-y type words. I'm sure if you found the shoe in a shop the tag would also have a parabola or a graph on it to proudly proclaim it comes with added Science!

      So in that context, science is clearly good. However, if you look at the current fascination with "organic food" (, science, in that case, is seen as irrefutably bad.

      I know those two examples are kind of unrelated to the article itself, but it's a topic I think about a fair amount.