Why no studies who compares conventional and alternative therapies?
In this podcast Lothar Hirneise and Klaus Pertl are talking about the question why there are no studies excisting who compares conventional and alternative therapies. We hope you will enjoy this podcast and we would love to get your view on this question.
Klaus: Hello everybody! And welcome back to our podcast. This is Klaus and Lothar, and today, we have a very important one. Because a lot of people always say, “well, this alternative cancer therapies, they can’t be any good, because otherwise, there would be some scientific studies and proof. And there aren’t any. So therefore, the conclusion is: they are not effective”. Lothar, Hello. And what do you think about that statement?
Lothar: Hi Klaus. We could talk for hours about studies. But let’s focus on the main thing here. If you are a cancer patient and you talk with your doctor about a cancer therapy, what are they most interested in? First: you want to know if this treatment helps you, in comparison to doing nothing. Of course, this is a normal question. The second important question is: whether there is maybe another possible better treatment? And of course, it doesn’t matter whether this is conventional or an alternative treatment. And the third question will be: what are the side effects of this treatment? But now, let’s have a closer look at studies in oncology. Over the last 50-60 years, thousands, really thousands, of studies have been conducted. Billions and trillions of dollars have been spent on studies for decades now. And most patients think that doctors who prescribed these therapies, they will also know if they can help you or not. But, Klaus, is it really like that? I tell you something. Let’s take a look at the most important question first. Whether this treatment helps you in comparison to not doing anything. We all know that the so-called ‘gold standard’ of studies is the so-called, ‘randomized double blind study”. But, did you know that this standard is not applied in oncology? You will not believe it. If you want to know if a treatment helps you or not, you need a study with two groups of people: one group of course, that receives the therapy; and the other group that does not receive this therapy. And precisely these studies which are common in all other faculties of medicine, do not exist in oncology. This is very, very important. These studies are not existing in oncology. And why? Why do they not exist? Because, it is impossible to give one group chemotherapy, and the other group gets just a placebo. Because of course you know exactly after one day who is in the group that gets the chemotherapy. Because they have already after one day some serious problems. So you know which group gets what, and so, it is not a double blind study anymore. So one group would have to use so-called “active placebos”.. you know, active placebos are placebos which create similar side effects. But no pharma company will accept that, and you know why? Because, they could discover, for example, that a certain chemotherapy would maybe not work better than doing nothing. The really interesting thing here is that in non of the studies in oncology, this main question that every cancer patient has, was never answered. This is comparable to the fact that for example – that a car magazine would always compare only two old cars, and never compare those cars with the new models from BMW, Porsche, or Mercedes. But what does this actually mean for a cancer patient? First of all, if a patient is offered a therapy and the doctor then rolls around with some great numbers, well we all know this Klaus, this is the usual thing they’re always doing. But then, you always have to ask – and now comes the very important sentence, “in comparison to what? Compared to another conventional therapy? Compared to doing nothing? Or even compared to an alternative therapy?” If I always compare McDonalds to Burger King, then I always eat only hamburger, and I have no idea of real, good food. It’s ridiculous. When I hear, over and over again that alternative therapies do not have good studies. But why is this the case? Because no university in the so-called ‘Western world’ would ever permit such studies. This is like, when I would say to you Klaus, “the food you just cooked tastes really terrible! But I never tried it”. Fact is, that conventional medicine is always saying, they have this ‘great randomized, double blind studies’, but in fact, they do not have any meaningful numbers at all. The only question that conventional doctors can answer, is just: whether chemotherapy A or B, or chemotherapy C is better. But come on, who wants to know this? A cancer patient? No. This is not important for a cancer patient. So to summarize this, if you read next time somewhere, how good or how bad a therapy is, then please remember my words. That the most important question, is always, “compared with what?”. And this Klaus, is here the problem. There are no real good cancer treatment studies out there. They must be 10,000 or even 100,000 conventional studies out there, I have no idea how many exactly. But you know what they never answer? The only question, what a cancer patient wants to answer. And the question is, “is this therapy better than doing nothing?”
Klaus: That is I think the key point. What you discovered by looking at lots of those research papers and studies that were done. And I think, everybody else can do it themselves, just type in your cancer study, and you can read through the study. There is indeed the following realization: the studies I’ve read only compare between a chemotherapy and a radiation, an operation, and a mix of those. And there never ever is a comparison with not doing anything. There’s none of those, that is the first thing and there is no comparison with an alternative therapy. And I think this has to do with the Ethics commission. They basically made a decision that it is “unethical to use a placebo or something else in cancer, since we all know that only chemo is working, so therefore it cannot be taken away from somebody”. Is that their logic?
Lothar: Just think about how crazy this kind of logic is? You mentioned the right word. It is ethical to do a chemotherapy which is a terrible poison. It is in this sense absolutely okay to poison somebody and nearly killing someone. This is okay. But to give somebody a placebo, is not okay in oncology, come on. I can only say, and it really upsets me a lot, that this is a joke Klaus. This is really a joke. I don’t know how else I can say this.
Klaus: I think especially because placebo studies are the norm. If you look at any painkiller, arthritis medication, blood pressure medication. They all use placebo. All of them. This is a normal and typical thing. And the shocking thing is, this is not done in oncology. Which is very, very, weird from the outside point. And it makes you a little bit concerned and worried, if you read that and become aware of that. So, the studies are, first of all, especially in oncology, not following the double blind logic. And secondly, I think another issue we have to address is that of costs. If we look at a study that needs to be done so it gets approval, I believe needs a certain number of patients that need to be in that group. They have to be similar, I believe in age and type of cancer, and then, you have to observe them, I believe, over a very long period of time. So, that whole cost issue is dramatic as well. And, therefore I believe there are only five, six, maybe ten companies worldwide, that are able to put up the money for such studies. And they want in the end a patent that gives them protection for many years for whatever they discovered, so that nobody else can use their discovery. And therefore, already by design, all the other ones are so to speak excluded from doing such studies.
Lothar: We don’t like it, but we can’t close our eyes here. In medicine, especially in oncology, we are speaking about one word, and the word is, “money”. You know, it’s a billion dollar business. I don’t want to make the mistake now and say, “oh, all the pharma companies are so bad, and all the doctors are bad”. No, no, no. You know they are not bad people. The only thing they want to do is, they want to make money. The only thing I would complain about pharma companies, why they don not invest their money in other things. They could invest more money in special high dosage vitamin therapies or something. They could also patent that. But you know, it is so much easier for them to develop some new antibodies, to do some.. well, I wanted to say new chemotherapy, but this is not true because there are no new chemotherapies. Do you know Klaus, that for years, we don’t have any kind of new chemotherapies? Only so-called, ‘new antibody’ therapies. So, anyway, we can’t forget that we speaking about a lot of money here. And you know what the normal patient – let me say – is not understanding? If he goes to a doctor, and most doctors are great people, and so, he can’t understand the system that lies behind that. He can’t understand that this doctor, this nice person, who is sitting on the other side of the desk, that he is maybe, recommending him something, or is making a decision what is the best therapy for him, based, not what is the best one for him, but based, what is the best for the hospital. What is the best for his bank account. What is the best for his ego satisfaction. So, most people I think they just don’t understand, because they trust doctors. And this is okay. I’m for sure the last person who is saying, “you should not trust a doctor”. But, we also can’t close our eyes and say, “oh, this is not true. No, no. A doctor only makes his decision, because he wants to have the best therapy for you”. Come on, we all know, this is not reality.
Klaus: I agree with you, the issue is really, it’s a, chicken and egg thing. On the one hand, the world out there says, “if it would work, you would have some studies”. On the other hand, it is legally, from an ethics point, not possible, and secondly from a financial point, it’s literally not possible. So how can it be solved Lothar? What is your view on this one? We know that there are observational studies, we know that there are single reports of people that have applied alternative therapies, and they got healed, and if you go to YouTube, there are many people telling their stories of healing. But, then, again the question comes up, “what about scientific studies? Is there ever a solution to this? How can it be solved in the end? Do you have any thoughts on that?
Lothar: I can say there may be two ways: the first way is of course, who is making the laws? That are politicians. And when you look to politicians – doesn’t matter in which country – I don’t see a chance that this will change. This is reality, you know. I don’t see that this way, ‘Way Number One’ will never work because politicians are – and this is the problem of democracy, in democracy you can buy politicians. And as long as companies can give money to parties and to politicians.. as long as this is happening, it will not be possible to change something here. But we don’t have to give up yet. You know what we have today? Is the internet. So this is the good thing with the internet. There are some little free T.V. stations, some little bit free radio stations, some little bit free magazines. And we have, systems like Facebook, social networks, and there, we can talk about this. It’s like what we do today with our podcast. More and more people understand that conventional therapies are not enough. You know what happened in the last years? More and more people know somebody who got chemotherapy and died. This is the truth. When you look to your family nearly everybody knows one person in the family who got, the so-called “best therapies” and died. So something is wrong. The people are understanding this more and more, and the people are understanding more and more: no, this can’t be the way. But, unfortunately, we have all these politicians, and they get money, to implement that kind of laws. And so from that point, we can’t change that. So, the only thing we can do, is what you and I are doing you know. We tell the people who are interested in this: this is the solution. This is what you can do. This is what you have to do if you want to become healthy. And now, it’s your choice; it’s your decision. Do you believe the the regular T.V. stations, or do you believe people like you and me? I think, that’s what the two ways are. But there’s no easy solution here for sure.
Klaus: This exactly why we do the podcast Lothar. We want to increase awareness so that the people who are interested, look at the studies, and now maybe look at it differently. Read through the studies and see if there was ever a placebo, or with what it was compared, and thereby, understand that there is truly, a strange thing going on in oncology. And secondly, it needs people who are able to say, ‘no’ to certain things, that will bring change to the system. So, let’s continue Lothar with our education and sharing our experience and understanding, and, in the hope that more and more people are interested in what we say. Awareness can already make a big difference. Today, we talked a little bit about why scientific studies are a very odd thing, especially in oncology, and, in the next podcast, we’re gonna look at the question, “is the body able to reverse cancer naturally? Is that really happening? Is that possible?” A very important question. So, thank you Lothar very much for today. And thank you again for listening in. We appreciate your interest very much and please continue sending us your questions, input, we love it very much. It’s bye from Klaus.
Lothar: And bye bye from Lothar.
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