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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 183

of 'Complementary and alternative therapies for cancer'

183
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Safety issues in using complementary and alternative medicine.
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Markman M
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J Clin Oncol. 2002;20(18 Suppl):39S.
 
PURPOSE: A number of reports have documented the apparent increasing popularity of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) among cancer patients. Unfortunately, there are limited available published data regarding the potential toxicity of a variety of CAM strategies.
METHODS: A review of the medical literature was undertaken to highlight the potential side effects of CAM.
RESULTS: Although many CAM approaches are quite safe, both minor and major toxicities have been documented, including emesis, hypersensitivity reactions, cardiovascular events, neurologic dysfunction, hepatic and renal failure, and the development of malignant disease.
CONCLUSION: It is important that oncologists are aware of what nonprescription CAM medications are being taking by their patients and have a basic understanding of the potential toxicities of these agents.
AD
Department of Hematology/Medical Oncology and Taussig Cancer Center, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA. markman@ccf.org
PMID