A Presentation on Alternative/Complementary

Therapies for Breast Cancer, January 23, 1996

Dr. Michael Schachter is a graduate of the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons and a board certified psychiatrist by training. He completed a 3 yr residency in psych at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn.He practiced as a psychiatrist before becoming a practitioner of complementary medicine. He maintains an office in Suffern, NY (845)368-4700.

He gave us a comprehensive historical overview of the treatment for breast cancer. He suggested that patients take a good hard look at how breast cancer is treated today conventionally, particulary in view of the flat survival rates(no changes in 20 years)and explore the possiblities of other methods. He believes some studies show that a combination of conventional and alternative are better. He quoted extensively from an article that appeared in Scientific American magazine in March 1995 "The Genetic Basis of Cancer" by Webster K. Cavenee and Raymond L. White.

He discussed the differences in types of estrogen and how they are produced and used in the body. Most known risk factors for breast cancer involve estrogen exposure. He discussed xenoestrogens which are pesticides(and other substances) which mimic estrogen and phytoestrogens which are food substances which may have a positive effect, i.e. soy products, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, etc.

Dr. Schachter used examples from a recent book called "Dressed To Kill" by Sydney Ross Singer and Soma Grismaijer concerning the (possible)link between breast cancer and bras. The authors are respectively an anthropologist and an anthropological researcher.

He spoke of the nature of studies on chemotherapy use and emphasized that some used size of tumor rather than survival as an outcome. He felt that changed the results as well as the dropping of people who did not do well during the trial. Optimal nutrition could reduce toxicity of chemotherapy but most oncologists are not aware of studies done in this area. The following areas benefited by optimimum nutrition: 1)reduction of mouth sores, fatigue, vomiting, hair loss and organ toxicity. 2)bolstering of the immune system 3)elimination or reduction of cachexyia 4)enhanced tumor killing activity 5)selectively starved tumors cells 6)slowed down cancer 7)nature's fighters introduced 8)protected against future cancer which radiation and chemotherapy sometimes cause. 9)lowered risk of recurrence in people with genetic vulnerability 10)significantly elevated chance for complete or partial remission by changing original conditions that brought out the cancer

Dr. Schachter works with patients with or without chemotherapy using a variety of methods including: Enzymes when taken with meals aid digestion, taken between meals help dissolve the protective coating of cancer cells.

Amino acids are highly recommeded such as:L-Glutamine, L-Arginine, L-Methionine and L-Cysteine. Sources of these are garlic, eggs and supplements.

Herbs: Hoxsey, Essiac. He suggested adding omega 3 to the diet in the form of flax seed, canola, soy, walnut or fish oil. Add omega 6 with borage oil, black currant, evening primrose oil. These stimulate the immune system. Also good are bioflavinoids, choline and inositol, Dimethyl Glycine(DMG), CoQ10(400 mgs suggested for breast cancer patients), N-Acetyl Cysteine(NAC), and mucopolysaccarides.

Therapeutic foods: shark & bovine cartillage, concentrated soy bean products, maitake & shitake mushrooms, blue-green algae, sun-chlorella, sprirulina and other green foods.

IV(intravenous) vitamin/supplements are recommended by Schachter. Especially Vitamin C, B, Glutathiomine. According to research done by Dr. Hugh Reardon of Wichita, KS., high dose Vitamin C can kill cancer cells. They also use hydrogen peroxide(alternated with Vitamin C) and are thinking of using ozone therapy.

He also suggested: exercise, stress management, fresh air and light-must have indirect sunlight in the eyes without wearing glasses, deep breathing.

Detoxification suggestions include: colon cleansing, fiber, essential oils, minerals, enemas if needed, heavy metal detox, liver detox(herbs, coffee enemas), fat souble chemicals and sauna sweating.

Hormone balancing: DHEA, Thyroid hormone, Thymus, Progesterone.

He also mentioned the drug Aredia which is used in bone metastases to control pain but has been shown to actually inhibit the metastases, Urea and creatine can be used to treat liver metastases.

Dr. Shachter encouraged all patients to support radiation with anti-oxidants and suggested asking our doctors about studies on this subject. He highly recommends the book by Patrick Quillin "Beating Cancer With Nutrition".

More information on Dr. Schachter's work at


Schachter Center for Complementary Medicine

LINK to Suffern, NY-based alternative physician

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