Many of us use supplements as either complementary or alternative medicines (CAMS) to treat our prostate cancer as well as advanced prostate cancer. If we interview a selection of men and ask what supplements they take there are a number of items we take that are fairly universal among us. They include pomegranate extract, green tea, curcummin, reservatrol, muscadine, silibinin and of course combination therapy of some of these items.

The question we need to ask is if they work? In reality we don’t know. The molecular mechanisms underlying their use and even their overall effectiveness remain poorly understood despite their common usage.

Samuel Klempner, MD a Research and Clinical Fellow of Hematology-Oncology at
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, MA wrote a brief discussion of this issue that should interest any of us who uses CAM. An abstract of his analysis is available here.

Doctor Klempner concludes that in many cases it is impossible to maintain serum levels of these CAM supplements that are commensurate the levels that are required to achieve the reputed mechanism of action.

Joel T. Nowak, M.A., M.S.W.