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C/R Support

 

CLINICAL APPLICATIONS

* Chemotherapy/radiation support: side effects and adverse reactions associated with these treatments

* Myasthenia gravis

* Chronic fatigue syndrome

* Prolapse of organs such as the stomach, rectum, uterus and bladder

* Anorexia and wasting syndrome

 

WESTERN THERAPEUTIC ACTIONS

* Chemoprotective and radioprotective benefits to prevent, minimize, or reverse adverse reactions associated with chemotherapy or radiation

* Immunostimulant effect to increase both specific and non-specific immunity

* Hematopoietic function to increase the production of red blood cells

 

CHINESE THERAPEUTIC ACTIONS

* Tonifies the Spleen and the Stomach

* Tonifies yin and moistens dryness

* Tonifies the wei (defensive) qi

* Harmonizes the middle jiao

 

DOSAGE

Take 3 to 4 capsules three times daily as a maintenance dose. Dosage may be increased to 5 to 6 capsules three times daily for cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, or radiation treatments. C/R Support should be taken on an empty stomach with warm water for maximum effectiveness. Honey can also be added to enhance the taste of the herbs, tonify qi and harmonize the middle jiao.

 

INGREDIENTS


Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae)

Chen Pi (Pericarpium Citri Reticulatae)

Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis)

Di Huang (Radix Rehmanniae)

Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps)

Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii)

Huang Qi (Radix Astragali)

Ling Zhi (Ganoderma)

Mai Dong (Radix Ophiopogonis)

Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng)

Shi Di (Calyx Kaki)

Zhi Gan Cao (Radix et Rhizoma Glycyrrhizae Praeparata cum Melle)

Zhu Ru (Caulis Bambusae in Taenia)


 

BACKGROUND

Cancer is the second leading cause of death, according to a report by the CDC published in January 11, 2012.[1] In Western medicine, treatment options for cancer include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Though these treatments may be effective, they are invasive to the body and often cause severe and serious damages to many organs and cells. Therefore, additional interventions are extremely important to alleviate the side effects of these invasive treatments, support the body and its health, and improve the overall quality of life.

 

FORMULA EXPLANATION

C/R Support is an herbal formula specifically designed to support patients with cancer as they undergo chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Though effective against cancer cells, chemotherapy and radiation destroy normal tissue and healthy cells and cause a wide array of side effects and adverse reactions, including but not limited to nausea, vomiting, hair loss, weakness and fatigue. For cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and radiation, C/R Support complements the overall treatment by enhancing the immune system, reducing the side effects of the drug treatment, inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, and boosting the energy and vitality of the patient.

        Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) is the chief herb in this formula. It replenishes the vital qi, consolidates the wei (defensive) qi, and protects against external pathogenic factors. It has anticancer effects to increase the content of cAMP and inhibit the growth of tumor cells. Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) tonifies blood and vital energy, increases the white blood cell count, and inhibits the growth of various viruses and bacteria. Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps) is essential in rebuilding the patient’s constitution and is used for chronically debilitated patients. Shi Di (Calyx Kaki), Zhi Gan Cao (Radix et Rhizoma Glycyrrhizae Praeparata cum Melle) and Zhu Ru (Caulis Bambusae in Taenia) tonify the Spleen and Stomach of the middle jiao to prevent nausea, vomiting and stomach discomfort. Chen Pi (Pericarpium Citri Reticulatae) strengthens the Spleen and dispels phlegm. Di Huang (Radix Rehmanniae), Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii), and Mai Dong (Radix Ophiopogonis) treat thirst and dryness by replenishing body fluids. Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) augments the yin and blood and relieves thirst and dryness. Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng) and Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae) tonify the Spleen qi to increase both energy and appetite during radiation treatments.

        C/R Support can also be used to treat prolapse of internal organs, such as the stomach, rectum, bladder, or uterus. Huang Qi (Radix Astragali), Ling Zhi (Ganoderma), Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng), and Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae) tonify qi, ascend yang, and raise the prolapse of internal organs. Similarly, qi and yang tonic herbs in this formula help to relieve chronic fatigue syndrome, anorexia, wasting syndrome, and myasthenia gravis.

 

CAUTIONS & CONTRAINDICATIONS

* C/R Support is not designed to treat cancer or replace chemotherapy and radiation. Its main focus is to complement chemotherapy and radiation treatments by strengthening the overall constitution of the patient and minimize the side effects.

* This formula is contraindicated in cases of excessive heat, damp heat, infection or inflammation.

* This herbal formula contains herbs that invigorate blood circulation, such as Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis). Therefore, patients who are on anticoagulant or antiplatelet therapies, such as Coumadin (warfarin), should use this formula with caution, or not at all, as there may be a higher risk of bleeding and bruising.[2],[3],[4]

* The safety status of using Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) in individuals with hormone-dependent cancer is unclear.[5],[6],[7] According to one reference, use of Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) is not associated with thickening of the endometrium or vaginal cell maturation, both of which would indicate an estrogenic effect. Furthermore, there is no confirmation of the presence of a phytoestrogen component or effect on hormone-dependent cancer when ferulic acid is evaluated as the main component of Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis).[8] According to another reference, the water extract of Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) has a weak estrogen-agonistic activity to stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells (MCF-7).[9] In summary, due to conflicting and insufficient data, use of Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) in patients with hormone-dependent cancer warrants caution pending further study.

 

CLINICAL NOTES

* C/R Support has a wide range of clinical applications. Its use is not limited to cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and radiation.

* C/R Support contains herbs with immune-enhancing, anticancer activities, and energy-boosting properties. It will benefit cancer patients, whether or not they are receiving chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

 

Pulse Diagnosis by Dr. Jimmy Wei-Yen Chang:

* Overall weakness, including weak immune system: tent pulse, a convex-shaped pulse that collapses upon pressure

* Weak digestion: small pulse, a weak and thin pulse that disappears upon pressure, on the right guan

 

SUPPLEMENTARY FORMULAS

* For patients with cancer who have extreme weakness and deficiency and cannot tolerate chemotherapy or radiation treatment, use CA Support.

* To enhance the immune system during or after chemotherapy or radiation treatment, add Immune +.

* For cancer of the lung and reproductive systems, add Cordyceps 3 to strengthen the constitution of these two organs.

* For hair loss during chemotherapy or radiation treatment, combine with Polygonum 14 to nourish qi and blood and prevent hair damage.

* For maintenance at the conclusion of chemotherapy or radiation treatment, take Cordyceps 3, Imperial Tonic and Immune + on a long-term basis.

* For poor appetite and loose stools from Spleen deficiency caused by chemotherapy or radiation, add GI Tonic.

* For Kidney yin deficiency, add Kidney Tonic (Yin).

* For Kidney yang deficiency, add Kidney Tonic (Yang).

* For constipation, add Gentle Lax (Deficient).

* For pain due to cancer, add Herbal ANG.

* For stress and anxiety, use Calm.

* For stress, anxiety, and insomnia, use Calm ZZZ.

* For a quick boost of energy and vitality, use Vibrant.

 

ACUPUNCTURE TREATMENT

Traditional Points:

* Zusanli (ST 36), Fuliu (KI 7), Neiguan (PC 6), Pishu (BL 20), Weishu (BL 21), Hegu (LI 4), Shanzhong (CV 17)

 

Classic Master Tung's Points:

* Bladder cancer/tumor: Simazhong (T 88.17), Tongshen (T 88.09), Wanshunyi (T 22.08), Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Waisanguan (T 77.27), Zhiwu (T 11.26)  

* Bone cancer/tumor: Bilateral Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Simaxia (T 88.19), Minghuang (T 88.12), Tianhuang (T 88.13), Qihuang (T 88.14), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Zhiwu (T 11.26). Needle everyday. Bleed HT and LU area below the knee. The more the blood is let out, the better the result.

* Brain cancer/tumor: Shangliu (T 55.06), Zhengjin (T 77.01), Zhengzong (T 77.02) with strong stimulation, Yizhong (T 77.05), Erzhong (T 77.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed dark veins nearby the medial malleolus or Shuijing (T 66.13). Bleed before needling for best result.

* Breast cancer/tumor: Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Simaxia (T 88.19), Yizhong (T 77.05), Erzhong (T 77.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Shuanglongyi (T 77.29)*, Shuanglonger (T 77.30)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed all dark veins nearby the HT, LU area on the legs [maximum of 150 mL for each time of bleeding). Bleed before needling for best result.

* Chondroma: Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Dihuang (T 77.19), Renhuang (T 77.21, Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Fuyuan (T 11.22), Shuangling (T 11.28), Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed the affected area. Bleed before needling for best result.

* Colon cancer/tumor: Sanzhong (T 77.07), Zuwujin (T 77.25), Zuqianjin (T 77.24), Tianhuang (T 88.13), Minghuang (T 88.12), Cesanli (T 77.22), Simazhong (T 88.17), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed Sihuashang (T 77.08), Sihuazhong (T 77.09), Sihuaxia (T 77.11), Fuchang (T 77.12), or dark veins nearby. Bleed the LU area below the knee. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Fallopian tube cancer/tumor: Fuke (T 11.24), Huanchao (T 11.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Jiemeiyi (T 88.04), Jiemeier (T 88.05), Jiemeisan (T 88.06), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed dark veins nearby Daling (PC 7), Yinxi (HT 6). Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Gallbladder cancer/tumor: Minghuang (T 88.12), Qihuang (T 88.14), Huozhi (T 88.15), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26)  

* Kidney cancer/tumor: Tianhuang (T 77.17), Dihuang (T 77.19), Renhuang (T 77.21), Tongshen (T 88.09), Wanshunyi (T 22.08), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26)  

* Liver cancer/tumor: Minghuang (T 88.12), Tianhuang (T 88.13), Qihuang (T 88.14), Huoying (T 66.03), Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Needle everyday.

* Lung cancer/tumor: Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Simaxia (T 88.19), Linggu (T 22.05), Dabai (T 22.04), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Waisanguan (T 77.27), Xinchang (T 11.19), Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed the LU area below the knee. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Lymphatic cancer/tumor: Wanshunyi (T 22.08), Yizhong (T 77.05), Erzhong (T 77.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Cesanli (T 77.22), Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Huoying (T 66.03), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed the LU area below the knee. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Nasal cancer/tumor: Linggu (T 22.05), Dabai (T 22.04), Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Simaxia (T 88.19), Fugesan (T 44.30)*, Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed the LU area below the knee. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Oral cancer/tumor: Bleed Shaoshang (LU 11), Sihuazhong (T 77.09), mouth area, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Osteosarcoma: Piyi (T 88.35)*, Pier (T 88.36)*, Simazhong (T 88.17), Tianhuangfu [Shenguan] (T 77.18), Huoying (T 66.03), Fuyuan (T 11.22), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed around affected area. The more the blood is let out, the better the result.

* Ovarian, uterus, cervix cancer/tumor: Fuke (T 11.24), Huanchao (T 11.06), Zhiwu (T 11.26), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Qimen (T 33.01), Qijiao (T 33.02), Qizheng (T 33.03), Yunbai (T 44.11), Menjin (T 66.05), Waisanguan (T 77.27), Tianhuang (T 77.17), Dihuang (T 77.19), Renhuang (T 77.21), Jiemeiyi (T 88.04), Jiemeier (T 88.05), Jiemeisan (T 88.06), Mufu (T 88.38)*, Tongshen (T 88.09), Tongbei (T 88.11). Bleed the dark veins nearby the web between the first and second toes; and second and third toes. Bleed sacral area with cupping. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Pancreatic cancer/tumor: Piyi (T 88.35)*, Pier (T 88.36)*, Pisan (T 88.37)*, Yizhong (T 77.05), Erzhong (T 77.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Minghuang (T 88.12), Qihuang (T 88.14), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26)

* Stomach cancer/tumor: Cesanli (T 77.22), Waisanguan (T 77.27), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed dark veins nearby the ST area in the lower limb. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.   

* Testicular cancer/tumor: Dajian (T 11.01), Xiaojian (T 11.02), Waijian (T 11.04), Fujian (T 11.03), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26)   

* Throat cancer/tumor: Tongguan (T 88.01), Cesanli (T 77.22), Yizhong (T 77.05), Erzhong (T 77.06), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Linggu (T 22.05), Dabai (T 22.04), Sihuashang (T 77.08), Zuqianjin (T 77.24), Zuwujin (T 77.25), Waisanguan (T 77.27), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed dark veins nearby Shaoshang (LU 11), nine points evenly on the neck, or the back of the neck or the ST channel on the lower limb. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Thyroid cancer/tumor: Xinling (T 33.17)*, Simashang (T 88.18), Simazhong (T 88.17), Simaxia (T 88.19), Waisanguan (T 77.27), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed Sihuazhong (T 77.09) and back of the neck. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Tongue cancer/tumor: Cesanli (T 77.22), Houjian (T 44.29)*, Minghuang (T 88.12), Qihuang (T 88.14), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed the LU area below the knee. Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

* Vaginal cancer/tumor: Fuke (T 11.24), Huanchao (T 11.06), Libai (T 44.12), Yunbai (T 44.11), Sanzhong (T 77.07), Shuangling (T 11.28)*, Zhiwu (T 11.26). Bleed dark veins nearby Daling (PC 7), Yinxi (HT 6). Bleed before needling for best result. The more the blood is let out, the better the effect.

 

Master Tung’s Points by Dr. Chuan-Min Wang:

* Chemotherapy, radiation, myasthenia gravis, organ prolapse, anorexia, wasting: Zhenghui (T 1010.01), Zhengben (T 1010.12), Zhongbai (T 22.06)

 

Balance Method by Dr. Richard Tan:

* Digestive symptoms due to chemotherapy or radiation:

§ Left side: Neiguan (PC 6), Lieque (LU 7), Zusanli (ST 36), Yanglingquan (GB 34)

§ Right side: Zhigou (TH 6), Hegu (LI 4), Yinlingquan (SP 9), Ququan (LR 8)

§ Left and right sides can be alternated from treatment to treatment.

 

Ear Acupuncture:

* Pain due to cancer

§ Main points: Subcortex, Heart, correlating diseased organ

§ Adjunct points: Sympathetic, Liver, Shenmen

* Select four to six points each time. Alternate the ear treatments every two days.

 

Auricular Medicine by Dr. Li-Chun Huang:

* Nausea: Cardia, Stomach, Liver, Shenmen, Occiput, Digestive Subcortex

* Fatigue: Sympathetic, Kidney, Liver, Spleen, San Jiao, Anxious, Nervous Subcortex, Speed Recovered Fatigue. Bleed Ear Apex.

* Edema at arm pit after breast cancer surgery: San Jiao, Arm Pit, Spleen, Endocrine, Large Auricular Nerve. Bleed Helix 4.

* Promoting immunity: Allergic Area, Endocrine, Adrenal Gland, Spleen, Liver. Bleed Ear Apex and Helix 1-6.

 

NUTRITION

* Eat a variety of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables of all colors. 

* Incorporate more high fiber whole grains and nuts into the diet.

* Drink warm or hot liquids with meals. Putting cold and ice on any part of the body will immediately constrict the flow of blood to that region. Similarly, drinking cold or iced drinks with meals will hinder the natural peristaltic movements of the digestive system.

* Foods with antioxidant effects, such as vitamin A, C and E are beneficial as they neutralize the free radicals and minimize damage to cells. Beneficial foods include citrus fruits, carrots, green leafy vegetables, and green tea.

* Chew food completely and thoroughly. The digestive tract can process and absorb smaller pieces of food much better than food that is incompletely chewed. Larger pieces of food can lead to incomplete digestion and digestive discomfort.

* Always eat breakfast. According to the TCM clock, the most optimal time for the digestive system is in the morning from 8 to 10 a.m.

* Give the body two to three hours between the last meal of the day and bedtime. During sleep, the digestive system slows down as well. Make sure the body has adequate time to digest the food before going into sleep mode.

* If the patient is allergic to any food or feels uncomfortable after eating certain foods, avoid eating them.

* Avoid fast food, processed foods, junk food, artificial sugars, and carbonated drinks. Stay away from meat, greasy food, alcohol, caffeine, dairy products (except for unsweetened low-fat yogurt), tap water, iron supplements and vegetables and fruits with pesticides.

* For patients who have breast cancer, the following foods are especially beneficial: all mushrooms, whole grains, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, yellow/orange vegetables (carrots, pumpkins, squash, sweet potatoes), fresh garlic, onions, fresh berries, apples, cherries, grapes, and plums.

* Ginger can always be used to relieve nausea. Boil ten slices of ginger for five minutes and mix with brown sugar. Slices of fresh ginger can also be chewed or sucked on for a stronger and immediate effect.

* The Spleen is responsible for generating post-natal qi and good Spleen function also contributes to a healthy immune system. Foods that damage the Spleen should be avoided:

§ Avoid any and all foods that contain sugar, such as cake, dessert, candy, chocolate, canned juice, soft drinks, caffeinated drinks, stevia, sugar substitutes, agave, xylitol, and corn syrup.

§ Avoid raw or uncooked meats, such as sashimi, sushi, steak tartar, and seared meat. Minimize consumption of foods that are cooling in nature, including tofu, tomato, celery, asparagus, bamboo, seaweed, kelp, bitter melon, cucumber, gourd, luffa, eggplant, winter melon, watermelon, honeydew, citrus, oranges, guava, grapefruit, pineapple, plums, pear, banana, papaya, white radish, mustard leaf, potherb mustard, Chinese kale, napa, bamboo sprout. Do not eat foods straight from the refrigerator. Long-term intake of cold fruits and vegetables like the ones listed above may be damaging to the Spleen. The cooling property of foods can be neutralized by cooking or adding 20 pieces of Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii).

§ Avoid carbohydrates like white rice or bread as they may produce dampness.

§ No seafood especially shellfish, like crabs, oyster, scallops, clams, lobster and shrimp (they enter the yangming Stomach channel).

§ Avoid fermented foods like cheese or fermented tofu.

§ Do not eat dairy products, such as milk, cream, yogurt, cheese, and ice cream.

§ No lamb, beef, goose or duck.

§ Avoid fried or greasy foods.

* Warm and hot foods that damage qi and yin should be avoided, such as:

§ Avoid certain fruits like mango and durian that produce heat.

§ Avoid spicy foods and stimulants like coffee, alcohol, and energy drinks.

§ Avoid spicy/pungent/aromatic vegetables such as pepper, garlic, onions, basil, rosemary, cumin, funnel, anise, leeks, chives, scallions, thyme, saffron, wormwood, mustard, chili pepper, and wasabi.

* Avoid food and drinks with artificial coloring.

* Consume as few meat products as possible. Do not eat processed meats, such as lunch meats, hot dogs and sausages, as they contain nitrites that are associated with inflammation and chronic disease.

 

The Tao of Nutrition by Dr. Maoshing Ni and Cathy McNease:

* Blend shitake or ganoderma mushrooms and white fungus, boil and drink the soup three times a day.

* Boil together mung beans, pearl barley, azuki beans, and figs. This makes a delicious dessert that will aid appetite and sustain energy levels.

* Avoid meat, chicken, coffee, cinnamon, anise, pepper, dairy products, spicy foods (except garlic), high fat foods, cooked oils, chemical additives, moldy foods, smoking, constipation, stress, and all irritations.

 

LIFESTYLE INSTRUCTIONS

* Avoid radiation from microwaves and limit prolonged exposure to appliances with high electromagnetic output, such as television, computer monitors, electric stoves, cellular phones, and other popular electronic devices.

* Relax, exercise regularly (tai chi chuan * tai ji quan], qi gong or yoga). Maintain a positive outlook on life.

* Avoid the consumption of alcohol and exposure to tobacco or nicotine in any form.

* Avoid stress and anxiety whenever possible. They suppress the immune system, slow down the metabolic process, and foster the development of cancer.

* Avoid wearing tight bras, which can cut off lymphatic flow, obstruct elimination of toxins and increase risk of tumor growth.

* Sleep by 10:00 p.m. In TCM, 11:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. is when the yin shifts to yang. It is crucial for the body to be at rest during this time for optimal health.

 

CASE STUDIES

* E.F., a 47-year-old female with uterine cancer, has been receiving chemotherapy for the previous ten months. She was experiencing numbness of her mouth and jaw, and losing her sense of taste and smell as a result of the chemotherapy. The practitioner diagnosed the condition as Kidney and Spleen qi deficiencies. She was instructed to take C/R Support. At first, she was only taking the herbs sporadically, but once she noticed the pain went away when taking them, she took them regularly. Her Western doctor commented that the patient’s appetite had increased, compliments to the herbs, which was very important when undergoing her chemotherapy. Submitted by C.W., Santa Barbara, California.

* In July 1999, a 66-year-old retired business woman was brought in for acupuncture and herbal treatments. She was seriously ill from severe chronic anorexia triggered by intolerance to chemotherapeutic treatment following radiation and surgery for cancer of the vocal cords. Approximately 5’4” tall, the woman was curled up in the fetal position, weighing 85 lbs., cold, lethargic, nauseous and exceedingly anxious. She had had one previous occurrence of the cancer two years before, and felt she was in danger of dying, if not from the cancer, then from the treatment. She began taking small doses of C/R Support granules stirred into warm water, as she could not swallow anything but liquids. She continued with C/R Support for several weeks, later augmented with Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang (Tonify the Middle and Augment the Qi Decoction), but found it difficult to incorporate a second herbal formula, so she relied on C/R Support for approximately eight months. No further chemotherapeutic or radiation treatment was attempted, at the direction of her M.D. oncologist and at the patient’s wishes. Within three weeks of beginning treatment, the woman was able to resume eating small meals of well-cooked foods, and within two months, she was gaining weight noticeably and regaining color in her face. Her voice was a strained whisper initially, gradually regaining some volume and tone. Because the underlying pathogens in her case were Lung heat, Heart fire, and dryness with persistent phlegm, her herbal formula was gradually changed to half C/R Support, and half additional ingredients to address the heat, dryness and phlegm. At approximately 24 months into treatment, C/R Support was discontinued, although the patient continues to take herbs specific to her imbalance and seek acupuncture weekly. Because of emotional issues related to her throat, compliance with her herbal regime is difficult for the patient: she seldom takes the full dosage or recommended frequency; however, she states she tries to become more and more consistent. She has regained normal weight and vitality, returning to an active ‘retired’ home and social life. As of January 2002, she continues to receive ‘cancer free’ reports from her oncologist and surgeon, and is seeing gradual improvement in her voice, thirst levels and phlegm. Submitted by L.C., Santa Monica, California.

* A 69-year-old male presented in July 1999 with advanced multiple myeloma, brittle bones, chronic intense pain in his back and hips, digestive difficulties, deficient constipation and hair loss. He is an entertainment professional and concerned about being able to preserve his career in the face of medical expenses and the emotional satisfaction of continuing to work. His blood cancer count was high and remained somewhat high through February 2001, when it was 2,100. He began taking C/R Support at the normal dosage in July 1999, combined over time with a normal dosage of either Nourish, Shou Wu Pian (Polygonum Pills), or You Gui Wan (Restore the Right [Kidney] Pill), depending on the symptoms presented at his weekly visits for acupuncture and herbal consultation. He continued on C/R Support through the middle of 2001, transitioning at that point to individualized formulas specific to his underlying digestive weakness, osteoporosis and pain. Although the osteoporotic aspects of his illness continue to make him vulnerable to skeletal injury and pain, he has maintained 80% of the hairline he had upon presenting for treatment, and has been able to continue working in his profession. His blood cancer counts in December 2001 were below 300. He states he continues to feel he is improving. Submitted by L.C., Santa Monica, California.

* K.E., a 45-year-old female, presented with ovarian cancer and C/R Support was prescribed at 2 grams three times a day. She was instructed to take 4 grams three times daily if her white blood cell count was low. She also received acupuncture treatment in addition to the herbs. Patient reported that she felt okay during the chemotherapy and stayed relatively healthy and kept the white blood cell count healthy. Submitted by W.F., Bloomfield, New Jersey.

 

PHARMACOLOGICAL AND CLINICAL RESEARCH

C/R Support is formulated specifically to offer chemotherapy or radiation support for patients with cancer. Chemotherapy or radiation work by killing cancer cells that multiply rapidly. Unfortunately, as these treatments destroy fast-growing cancer cells, they can also cause serious damages to fast-growing healthy cells, such as red blood cells, white blood cells, bone marrow cells, hair follicles and cells in the digestive tract (mouth, throat, stomach and intestines). So while it may be important to use chemotherapy or radiation to treat cancer, it is equally important to use herbs to alleviate the side effects of these harsh treatments and improve the quality of life.

        C/R Support is formulated with many herbs specifically to alleviate the side effects of many chemotherapy drugs and radiation treatments. Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps) is effective to alleviate leukopenia caused by Taxol (paclitaxel) by protecting both hematopoietic progenitor cells directly and the bone marrow stem cell niche through its effects on osteoblast differentiation.[10] Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii) shows a protective effect against Adriamycin (doxorubicin)-induced cardiotoxicity through antioxidant-mediated mechanisms.[11] Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii) is also an excellent option to treat myelosuppression induced by chemotherapy or radiation.[12] Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) has shown many benefits to support patients treated with chemotherapy or radiation. It prevents nephrotoxicity caused by Platinol (cisplatin) by reversing the increase in urea, creatinine levels and ALP activity and also maintaining the renal antioxidant defense.[13] Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) also alleviates many Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide)-induced toxicities, such as decrease in body weight, natural killer activity, interferon-gamma production, and cytotoxic T lymphocyte activity.[14] Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng) has a significant effect to protect the gastrointestinal tract of cancer patients who receive radiation treatment. It also protects the hematopoietic system and increases the number of bone marrow cells and spleen cells.[15] Lastly, Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) has been shown in multiple studies to alleviate side effects associated with chemotherapy. Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) significantly attenuated cardiotoxicity induced by Cerubidine (daunorubicin) by decreasing free radical release and apoptosis in cultured neonatal cardiomyocytes.[16] It is also effective to restore the depressed immune functions in subjects with tumor treated with Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide).[17] Finally, Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) promotes myelopoiesis and enhances hematopoiesis in subjects with myelosuppression caused by Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide).[18]

        C/R Support contains many herbs with general immunostimulant and immunomodulatory effects. Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) has been shown repeatedly through modern research to increase both specific and non-specific immunity.[19],[20],[21] Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae) has been shown to increase the activity of the macrophages and reticuloendothelial system, and elevate the number of white blood cells, lymphocytes, and IgG.[22],[23] Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii) has an effect to increase non-specific immunity and boost phagocytic activity of the macrophages and the total number of T cells.[24] Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng) has immune-enhancing effects to increase the function of the reticuloendothelial system and increases the total count of IgM.[25] Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps) is another herb that has demonstrated immunomodulatory functions. It enhances the overall immunity by increasing the number of lymphocytes and natural killer cells, and the production of interleukin, interferon and tumor-necrosis-factor.[26],[27],[28],[29],[30] Cordysinocan, a polysaccharide isolated from cultured Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps), activates immune responses in cultured T-lymphocytes and macrophages to signal the cascade and induction of cytokines.[31] Lastly, Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) has a wide range of therapeutic effects in the treatment of cancer. Various clinical studies have demonstrated the effects of Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) to enhance the immune system.[32],[33],[34],[35] The specific effects of Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) include an increase in monocytes, macrophages, and T lymphocytes as well as an increased production of cytokine, interleukin, tumor-necrosis-factor, and interferon. Ling Zhi (Ganoderma) has also been used to successfully treat leukopenia.[36]

        In addition, C/R Support also contains many herbs with hematopoietic effects to increase the production of red blood cells. Specifically, administration of Gou Qi Zi (Fructus Lycii) in decoction has been shown to increase the production of red blood cells and white blood cells.[37] Huang Qi (Radix Astragali) has been shown to increase the production and maturity of blood cells from the bone marrow.[38] Furthermore, use of Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis) in Si Wu Tang (Four-Substance Decoction) showed a marked hematopoietic effect to increase red blood cells for the treatment of anemia. [39] The mechanism of action is attributed to increased activity of colony-stimulating factors (CSF).[40]

        In summary, C/R Support is an important formula for chemotherapy or radiation support. It contains herbs that alleviate the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation, and improves the quality of life for the patient.

 

COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS

Despite all the advances in medicine, treatment of cancer is still in its relative infancy in both Western and traditional Chinese medicine.

        Optimal treatment methods may include chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery. Though they may be effective, they are extremely harsh and create a huge number of side effects, including severe nausea, vomiting, hair loss, and most importantly, bone marrow suppression with decreased counts of red and white blood cells. Serious cases of bone marrow suppression often necessitate the termination of chemotherapy and radiation treatments, a scenario where the patient suffers from both cancer and its treatments at the same time.

        Use of herbs is extremely effective to complement chemotherapy and radiation. Not only do they alleviate many side effects of chemotherapy and radiation, they strengthen the overall constitution of the body so they can tolerate and finish the entire course of therapies.

        Optimal therapy in cases of cancer is not to choose between Western or traditional Chinese medicine, but to integrate Western and traditional Chinese medicines together. These two modalities of medicine complement each others, and provide the brightest outlook and prognosis for successful treatment of cancer.

 



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[9] Lau CB, Ho TC, Chan TW, Kim SC. Use of dong quai (Angelica sinensis) to treat peri- or postmenopausal symptoms in women with breast cancer: is it appropriate? Menopause 2005 Nov-Dec;12(6):734-40.

[10] Liu WC, Chuang WL, Tsai ML, Hong JH, McBride WH, Chiang CS. Cordyceps sinensis health supplement enhances recovery from taxol-induced leukopenia. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2008 Apr;233(4):447-55.

[11] Xin YF, Zhou GL, Deng ZY, Chen YX, Wu YG, Xu PS, Xuan YX. Protective effect of Lycium barbarum on doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity. Phytother Res. 2007 Nov;21(11):1020-4.

[12] Gong H, Shen P, Jin L, Xing C, Tang F. Therapeutic effects of Lycium barbarum polysaccharide (LBP) on irradiation or chemotherapy-induced myelosuppressive mice. Cancer Biother Radiopharm. 2005 Apr;20(2):155-62.

[13] Pillai TG, John M, Sara Thomas G. Prevention of cisplatin induced nephrotoxicity by terpenes isolated from Ganoderma lucidum occurring in Southern Parts of India. College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Mannuthy, Thrissur, Kerala, India. Exp Toxicol Pathol. 2011 Jan;63(1-2):157-60.

[14] Nonaka Y, Ishibashi H, Nakai M, Shibata H, Kiso Y, Abe S. Effects of the antlered form of Ganoderma lucidum on tumor growth and metastasis in cyclophosphamide-treated mice. Institute for Health Care Science, Suntory Ltd., Mishima-gun, Osaka 618-8503, Japan. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2008 Jun;72(6):1399-408.

[15] Park E, Hwang I, Song JY, Jee Y. Acidic polysaccharide of Panax ginseng as a defense against small intestinal damage by whole-body gamma irradiation of mice. Applied Radiological Science Research Institute, Cheju National University, Jeju, South Korea. Acta Histochem. 2011 Jan;113(1):19-23.

[16] Luo Z, Zhong L, Han X, Wang H, Zhong J, Xuan Z. Astragalus membranaceus prevents daunorubicin-induced apoptosis of cultured neonatal cardiomyocytes: role of free radical effect of Astragalus membranaceus on daunorubicin cardiotoxicity. Shanghai Institute of Hematology, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 20001, China. Phytother Res. 2009 Jun;23(6):761-7.

[17] Cho WC, Leung KN. In vitro and in vivo immunomodulating and immunorestorative effects of Astragalus membranaceus. Department of Clinical Oncology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Hong Kong, SAR, China. J Ethnopharmacol. 2007 Aug 15;113(1):132-41.

[18] Zhu XL, Zhu BD. Mechanisms by which Astragalus membranaceus injection regulates hematopoiesis in myelosuppressed mice. Department of Pharmacology, School of Basic Medical Science, Peking University Health Science Center, 38 Xueyuan Road, Haidian Qu, Beijing 100083, China. Phytother Res. 2007 Jul;21(7):663-7.

[19] Chu, DT. et al. Immunotherapy with Chinese medicinal herbs. I. immune restoration of local xenogenetic graft-versus-host reaction in cancer patients by fractionated astragalus membranaceus in vitro. Journal of Clinical & Laboratory Immunology. Mar. 1988; 25(3):119-23.

[20] Sun, Y. et al. Immune restoration and/or augmentation of local graft versus host reaction by traditional Chinese medicinal herbs. Cancer. July 1983; 52(1):70-3.

[21] Sun, Y. et al. Preliminary observations on the effects of the Chinese medicinal herbs astragalus membranaceus and ganoderma lucidum on lymphocyte blastogenic responses. Journal of Biological Response Modifiers. 1983; 2(3):227-37.

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[26] Kuo,YC. et al. Cordyceps sinensis as an immuno-modulatory agent. American Journal Of Chinese Medicine. 24(2):111-25, 1996

[27] Guan, YJ. et al. Effect of cordyceps sinensis on T-lymphocyte subsets in chronic renal failure. Chung-Kuo Chung His I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih. Jun. 1992; 12(6):338-9,323.

[28] Liu, C. et al. Effects of cordyceps sinensis (CS) on in vitro natural killer cells. Chung-Kuo Chung His I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih. May. 1992; 12(5):267-9,259.

[29] Xu, RH. et al. Effects of cordyceps sinensis on natural killer activity and colony formation of B16 melanoma. Chinese Medical Journal. Feb. 1992; 105(2):97-101.

[30] Liu, P. et al. Influence of cordyceps sinensis (berk.) sacc. and rat serum containing same medicine on IL-1, IFN and TNF produced by rat Kupffer's cells. Chung Kuo Chung Yao Tsa Chih, June 1996; 21(6):367-9, 384.

[31] Cheung JK, Li J, Cheung AW, Zhu Y, Zheng KY, Bi CW, Duan R, Choi RC, Lau DT, Dong TT, Lau BW, Tsim KW. Cordysinocan, a polysaccharide isolated from cultured Cordyceps, activates immune responses in cultured T-lymphocytes and macrophages: signaling cascade and induction of cytokines. J Ethnopharmacol. 2009 Jul 6;124(1):61-8.

[32] Wang, SY. et al. The anti-tumor effect of ganoderma lucidum is mediated by cytokines released from activated macrophages and t-lymphocytes. International Journal Of Cancer. Mar 17. 1997; 70(6):699-705.

[33] Van Der Hem, LG. et al. Ling Zhi-8: Studies of a new immunomodulating agent. Transplantation. Sep 15. 1995; 60(5):438-43.

[34] Haak-Frendscho, M. et al. Ling Zhi-8: A novel t-cell mitogen induces cytokine production and up-regulation of ICAM-1 expression. Cellular Immunology. Aug. 1993; 150(1):101-13.

[35] Tanaka, S. et al. Complete amino acid sequence of a novel immuno-modulatory protein, ling zhi-9. an immuno-modulator from a fungus, ganoderma lucidum, having similar effect to immunoglobulin variable regions.

[36] Zhong Hua Xue Yi Za Zhi (Chinese Journal of Hematology), 1985; 7:428.

[37] Zhong Yao Xue (Chinese Herbology), 1998; 860:862.

[38] Nan Jing Zhong Yi Xue Yuan Xue Bao (Journal of Nanjing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine), 1989; 1:43.

[39] Shan Xi Zhong Yi Xue Yuan Xue Bao (Journal of Shanxi University School of Chinese Medicine) 1986;2:40.

[40] Zhong Yao Yao Li Yu Lin Chuang (Pharmacology and Clinical Applications of Chinese Herbs) 1992;152.