Cancer is fast in replacing heart disease among worldwide asthe number one cause of death in adults. For a century, cancer experts havebeen continuing on the same route of treatment for a majority of cancer caseswhich are unlikely to make many positive results in the lives of theirpatients, therefore patients all over the world are in search of better choices(Michael lam, 2003). Breast cancer is the secondmost common disease diagnosed and second leading cause of cancer death amongwomen worldwide. Breast cancers develop either in the breast tissue made upof glands for milk or in the lobes. Breast cancer is seen either during ascreening checkup, before symptoms have developed, or after a woman discovereda lump (Hider and Nicholas, 1999).
In most countries, including China, United States, India, Sri Lanka, America,Germany standard treatment choices for breast cancer include surgical methods,chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and endocrine therapy. However, a considerablenumber of breast cancer patients, even those who live in North America andWestern Europe have searched for other options and, reported to use various types ofComplementary and Alternative Medicine therapies (CAM) (Cui et al.,2004) Three recent surveys showed that 42%–50% of adults used some type of alternative carein the past year (Lee et al.,2000).
CAM isa group of various medical and health care systems practices, their originscome from outside of mainstream medicine (Halzman, 1997).The failure of standardhealthcare, changes in the health care delivery system, patients’ prefer for”holistic” or “natural” remedy which plays an active role in their treatment supportingof the body’s own healing powers and the desire for a non-toxic, gentletreatment (Richter, Fleischhacker and Sperner-unterweger, 2001).Themeaning of complementary and alternative medicine within the past 20 years has revivedto include a range of behavioral methods (e.g., spiritual techniques andrelaxation methods) and clinical methods (such as massage, herbal remedies, andchiropractic) which were previously not been considered as the components ofalternative medicine. Now surveys have found that 30 to 40 percent of the U.
S.public uses alternative medicine (Harold J. Burstein, M.D.
, Ph.D., Shari Gelber, M.S., Edward Guadagnoli, Ph.D., and Jane C.
Weeks, M.D., 1999). Retrospective orcross-sectional studies have studied that the use of alternative medicine amongcancer patients population are large. Mutually, these studies have proven thatlevel of income, amount of education, and age are all strongly predictive ofthe level of use of alternative medicine, which includes mind therapies such ashypnosis, mental imagery, and relaxation and body therapies such asacupuncture, herbal treatments and chiropractic (Harold J. Burstein, M.D., Ph.
D., Shari Gelber, M.S., Edward Guadagnoli, Ph.D.
, and Jane C. Weeks, M.D., 1999).
In the United States, interest in alternative therapies isgrowing steadily such treatments are, metabolic therapy, diets, mega-vitamins,mental imagery for anti-tumor effects, spiritual or faith healing and immunetherapy are most commonly used. In Germany and Switzerland, mistletoepreparations are most repeatedly applied. Nutrition-related measures, such asspecial drinks, teas or diets, and vitamin preparations, are used often. Inmany cases, combinations of two or more preparations are used simultaneously (Richter,Fleischhacker, and Sperner-unterweger, 2001). In China breast cancerpatients are believed to be using Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and/orother CAM therapies, TCM usually consisting of herbal medicine and acupuncture (Cui et al.,2004).
In a study on treatment, Söllner et al. found that cancerpatients using alternative medicine in addition to conventional therapy showeda more pronounced active fighting way of dealing with their illness thanpatients receiving only conventional treatment (Richter, Fleischhacker, and Sperner-unterweger, 2001).