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Cancer is fast in replacing heart disease among worldwide as
the number one cause of death in adults. For a century, cancer experts have
been continuing on the same route of treatment for a majority of cancer cases
which are unlikely to make many positive results in the lives of their
patients, therefore patients all over the world are in search of better choices
(Michael lam, 2003). Breast cancer is the second
most common disease diagnosed and second leading cause of cancer death among
women worldwide. Breast cancers develop either in the breast tissue made up
of glands for milk or in the lobes. Breast cancer is seen either during a
screening checkup, before symptoms have developed, or after a woman discovered
a 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 considerable
number of breast cancer patients, even those who live in North America and
Western Europe have searched for other options and,  reported to use various types of
Complementary and Alternative Medicine therapies (CAM) (Cui et al.,
2004)  Three recent surveys showed that 42%–50% of adults used some type of alternative care
in the past year (Lee et al.,
CAM is
a group of various medical and health care systems practices, their origins
come from outside of mainstream medicine (Halzman, 1997).

The failure of standard
healthcare, changes in the health care delivery system, patients’ prefer for
“holistic” or “natural” remedy which plays an active role in their treatment supporting
of the body’s own healing powers and the desire for a non-toxic, gentle
treatment (Richter, Fleischhacker and Sperner-unterweger, 2001).The
meaning of complementary and alternative medicine within the past 20 years has revived
to include a range of behavioral methods (e.g., spiritual techniques and
relaxation methods) and clinical methods (such as massage, herbal remedies, and
chiropractic) which were previously not been considered as the components of
alternative 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 or
cross-sectional studies have studied that the use of alternative medicine among
cancer patients population are large. Mutually, these studies have proven that
level of income, amount of education, and age are all strongly predictive of
the level of use of alternative medicine, which includes mind therapies such as
hypnosis, mental imagery, and relaxation and body therapies such as
acupuncture, 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).

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In the United States, interest in alternative therapies is
growing steadily such treatments are, metabolic therapy, diets, mega-vitamins,
mental imagery for anti-tumor effects, spiritual or faith healing and immune
therapy are most commonly used. In Germany and Switzerland, mistletoe
preparations are most repeatedly applied. Nutrition-related measures, such as
special drinks, teas or diets, and vitamin preparations, are used often. In
many cases, combinations of two or more preparations are used simultaneously (Richter,
Fleischhacker, and Sperner-unterweger, 2001). In China breast cancer
patients are believed to be using Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and/or
other CAM therapies, TCM usually consisting of herbal medicine and acupuncture (Cui et al.,

In a study on treatment, Söllner et al. found that cancer
patients using alternative medicine in addition to conventional therapy showed
a more pronounced active fighting way of dealing with their illness than
patients receiving only conventional treatment (Richter, Fleischhacker, and Sperner-unterweger, 2001).

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