Young Adults with Cancer Website

Factors to Consider in Deciding on your Cancer Treatment

by Mark Williams

In my opinion, deciding a course of cancer treatment is a very personal and individual matter that should be decided by the patient and their loved ones without judgment from those outside of that circle.  In this article, I am going to discuss what factors went into my decision to go through chemotherapy for my Stage 3 Hodgkin's Disease (Lymphoma).  As you are well aware, many of the treatments recommended by the medical establishment are incredible taxing on your body and can cause an enormous amount of damage to the patient.  When people ask me what chemotherapy was like, I tell them it felt like there was a nuclear war going on inside of me.  There is a lot of truth to that.  Many types of chemo and radiation kill healthy cells right along with the cancer.

The first things I wanted to know when talking to my doctor about his suggested treatment, ABVD (short for the names of the 4 nasty chemicals in the cocktail) Chemotherapy, was 1) What are my odds of survival? and 2) What are the side effects of this treatment?  For me the odds of survival were 50% and the side effects were many.  The most significant side effect was that there was about a 5% chance of developing a secondary cancer, like Leukemia.  I decided that going through the chemo was worth the 50% chance of survival.  I also believed that I could increase those odds significantly if I exercised, changed my diet, added natural supplements to my daily diet, maintained a positive attitude, prayed a lot, and asked others to pray for me.

Having been through the chemo, I can guarantee you that I would not go through that for a 10 or 20% chance of survival!  To me, the lower the chance of survival and the greater the side effects, the more open I am to alternative treatments.

A note about clinical trials:

Clinical trials can also be an excellent treatment choice in some circumstances.  One of the common misconceptions about clinical trials is the fear that you may receive a placebo (useless sugar pill).  However, clinical trials typically compare today's common treatment with a newer, experimental treatment.  So, you will get one or the other.  Just make sure your understand the risks and odds of the treatment options within a clinical trial so you can make an informed decision.

About Me:

My name is Mark Williams and I am a cancer survivor currently in remission by the grace of God. I am passionate about helping and encouraging others who are fighting cancer. I actively help them think through all of the issues they face upon hearing such shocking and devastating news and offer prayer support. Sometimes people also just need someone to listen. This is a personal ministry of mine that I provide as time permits without cost and from a Christian point of view. If you would like to reach me, please use the contact form on this website

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