There are risks involved such as anesthesia complications, infections and immune suppression. There are types of surgery that can be done, preventative which is done to measure or remove precancerous conditions. Palliative surgery which is to measure or reduce pain and other symptoms and reconstructive surgeries which are done when a procedure causes disfigurement or deformity to the cancer patients.
Removing a tumor may stimulate the growth of more. Patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery for malignancies should have careful follow up with special attention to the port sites. Anti-angiogenesis drugs given prior to surgery may improve the chances of long term remission however, they may slow the rate of healing post operative. Studies suggest that surgery suppresses immune function by directly reducing natural killer cells and other immune factors. Our natural killer cells destroy cancer cells and are there to inhibit metastasis. This suppression of our immune system makes cancer patients more susceptible to developing metastatic lesions. Talk to your doctor about prescription antioxidants.
The patient who becomes educated, now has access to drugs to facilitate systemic control of cancer rather than to promote metastasis. Patients need to enhance immune function and should consider supplementing with melatonin, lactoferrin, Echinacea, garlic and a special preparation called MGN-3 for enhancing natural killer cell activity before and after surgery. Avoiding morphine and other opiates helps to prevent immune suppression and the development of tumor angiogenesis. For pain the drug tramadol should be requested instead. It’s important to know the right questions to ask your doctor before surgery. A Cancer Coach can help you make your list of questions and help prepare you for any upcoming surgery and recovery.
Bring some great relaxation CD's with you to the hospital to help you boost your immune system and recovery.
Lynn Thier RHN,
Certified Cancer Coach