This treatment modality is used in place of conventional therapies to treat cancer. Seek advice from a qualified physician before replacing standard cancer therapy with antineoplaston therapy.
What does antineoplaston therapy involve?
Antineoplastons, proteins that occur naturally in the body, were first identified by Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski. Because Dr. Burzynski found these proteins in the blood and urine of healthy people, but not in cancer patients, he reasoned that antineoplastons may help control the growth of cancer. Currently, antineoplastons are administered intravenously through a catheter inserted in a central venous line. A pump infuses the medications at scheduled intervals. The duration of treatment depends on the patient's response.
How is antineoplaston therapy thought to treat cancer?
According to Dr. Burzynski, antineoplastons are a part of the human body's natural biochemical defense system. He hypothesized that these peptides inhibit cancer cell growth by causing cancer cells to grow normally instead of uncontrollably. Dr. Burzynski believes antineoplastons function as "biochemical microswitches;" turning off oncogenes that are thought to cause cancer while turning on tumor suppressor genes that stop it.
What has been proven about the benefit of antineoplaston therapy?
After a review of Dr. Burzynski's best cases in 1991, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) determined that there was presumptive evidence of antitumor activity. Protocols were developed and begun in 1993 with input from the NCI and Dr. Burzynski. However, in 1995, the studies were closed prior to completion because a consensus could not be achieved with Dr. Burzynski on proposed changes in the protocol. No conclusions could be made at that time about the effectiveness or toxicity of antineoplastons due to the small study population. Since that time, Dr. Burzynski has received a treatment IND for permission to study antineoplastons from the FDA. Currently, the Burzynski Clinic is conducting 72 FDA-approved clinical trials of antineoplastons for various cancer types. As patients are treated and responses are reported, the value of this treatment will finally be known. However, until there is documented evidence from carefully controlled studies of the efficacy of antineoplastons, the American Cancer Society urges cancer patients to treat their disease with proven methods of treatment.
What is the potential risk or harm of antineoplaston therapy?
Antineoplastons are well tolerated by most patients but they do have side effects. These side effects include nausea, vomiting, stomach gas, slight rashes, chills, fever, joint and muscle pain, changes in blood pressure and an unpleasant body odor.
How much does antineoplaston therapy cost?
Before consultation with Dr. Burzynski, an initial deposit of $6000 is required from all patients. Treatment costs run between $7,000 and $9,500 a month. The duration is usually between four and twelve months depending on the patient's response. Treatment with antineoplastons occurs at the Burzynski Clinic in Houston, TX on an outpatient basis. Travel and housing costs are not included in the treatment fee. A few insurance companies will pay for treatment with antineoplastons but the majority do not.
For additional information:
Burzynski Research Institute
9432 Old Katy Road
Houston, TX 77055
Telephone: (731) 335-5697
Web site: www.cancermed.com
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
1515 Holcombe Boulevard
Houston, TX 77030
Telephone: (800) 392-1611
Web site: www.mdanderson.org/departments/CIMER/
Note: Information about therapies is intended to help you make informed choices, not to endorse any particular therapy. The information is courtesy of "Integrating Complementary and Alternative Therapies for Cancer Patients," a handbook written as an independent study project by Heather Morein. For more information, see the full text of the handbook (PDF), including all references and appendices.