Anaximperator blog

Blogging against alternative cancer treatments

Health Ranger Mike Adams And The Death of Steve Jobs

As was to be expected, it didn’t take Mike Adams long to inform the world of the cause of Steve Job’s death. It was of course, as it always is, conventional cancer treatments – chemotherapy and radiation in particular – and not cancer, for in Mike Adams’s world-of-miracles-that-never-happen, there is no such thing as dying from cancer.

Adams claims the various chemotherapy and radiation treatments Jobs underwent, both in the USA and abroad, brought about his death, implying that had he not done this, he would most certainly have been alive and healthy to this day. Curiously though, what Adams fails to mention is that Jobs, after he was first diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer, decided to forgo conventional treatment and tried to cure his cancer with an alternative food regime. Apparently the results were dissappointing, for after about nine months of alternative therapy he had his tumour surgically removed. Outlook after surgery can be quite good, provided the tumour is removed before it has had a chance to spread to other organs.

We don’t know whether the delay in standard treatment caused the cancer to spread; it may have, but then again, it may not have. What we do know is that Jobs survived for almost eight years after his diagnosis, which, to all intents and purposes, is impressive when it comes to pancreatic cancer, and that he did this with the help of standard cancer treatments.

Steve Jobs died on Wednesday, October 5 2011, at the age of 56

This was typed on an Apple MacBook – the best computer I ever had.

22 responses to “Health Ranger Mike Adams And The Death of Steve Jobs

  1. Erica Kirchner-Dean October 7, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Anyone who had not had cancer has NO right to judge. It is every soul’s right to seek their own treatment in their own time. We have no choices when coming into this world but we do do have the right to choose our paths before leaving this world. I didn’t realize Steve delayed surgery for 9 months. That was his right and I would never criticize him for it.

    I love your blog Beatis, thank you for letting me vent.

  2. cryptocheilus October 7, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    He chose to delay his surgery. That was unwise. What he ‘alternatively’ did in the meantime isn’t even relevant, as is the question if it is ‘every soul’s right to seek their own treatment’. It would only be more sad if that ‘treament’ was based on an alternative food regime.

  3. Bart B. Van Bockstaele October 7, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Yes, everybody “has the right”, but that right only has meaning if the person exercising it *knows* what he or she is doing. Obviously Steve Jobs did *not* want to die. This means that he was swindled by his own ignorance into following a treatment known not to work. That is not ‘choice’ but arbitrariness.

  4. S.D. October 7, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    The millions of deaths related to cancer are enough proof that conventional methods DO. NOT. WORK. The alternative treatments that do deliver results are ridiculed and ignored. Cannabis is the cure, it is and it has always been, we have been given this plant by mother nature to use it, yet when you do you are arrested and put in jail. The results are there, all that is left is for people to start realizing that perhaps we need to do more research into this, and that people who do want to use it (for whatever reason) should be allowed to instead of being limited to a few treatments that have shown time and time again that they don’t work.

    If you are going to dismiss this, then please answer the following; why can I TRY to use chemotherapy and if it fails I will die, but I CAN’T TRY cannabis to see if it works? It’s the same damn thing, it’s my life, if I want to try it I should be allowed to.

  5. jli October 7, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    I think one of the problems is, that we don’t have many follow studies, giving systematic data on what happens when people forgo conventional treatment and go for alternative therapy instead.

    The alties (who really should do those studies) are really not interested in doing them (who needs followup studies when you can produce testimonials?).

    I am aware of these two studies concerning breast cancer:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16978951
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21225354

    They show that the risk of progression/death significantly increases – most notably in those who refuse surgery, but also in those who refuse additional radio-chemotherapy.

  6. beatis October 7, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    @S.D.

    Cannabinoids as a treatment for cancer are widely researched, but it is absolutely not true that it is a cancer cure-all, as is claimed in alt-med circles. There is as yet no convincing scientific evidence that cannabis or cannabis oil can successfully treat cancer, so forgoing standard treatments in favour of cannabis would not be a wise decision.

  7. beatis October 7, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    @jli

    I think one of the problems is, that we don’t have many follow studies, giving systematic data on what happens when people forgo conventional treatment and go for alternative therapy instead.

    Thanks, I’ll devote a post to this shortly.

  8. jli October 7, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Cannabinoids as a treatment for cancer are widely researched,

    They are indeed. It works on cell lines in a dish, and in studies using mouse models a 50% reduction in tumor size has been reported.

    Cancer is a collective term for approximately 200 different diseases. Every cell type in your body can (in principle) develop into its own type of cancer. On top of that individual cancer cells in every cancer are also different from one another. So a compound that may damage one cancer cell may do nothing another cancer cell. This is how resistance to chemotherapy develops. The sensitive cells are mopped up leaving the rest behind.

    In a cancer cell line, all the cancer cells are identical. This is one reason why you can’t deduce from a cell line study that it will work in patients. And even in more realistic situations where you treat rats/mice that have been given cancer, you can’t be sure that the effect you observe automatically translates into an effect on human cancers.

    A comparison of drug performance in mouse models with subsequent clinical trials shows that drugs which reduce tumor bulk by less than 60% (Cannabinoids reduced cancer size by only 50%) do not show efficacy in human trials: http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v84/n10/pdf/6691796a.pdf

    So from a taxpayers (And of cause all present and future patients) view, research funds are better spent otherwise. That is not the same as saying that research into cannabinoids should not be carried out (and it is as already mentioned). But it is not likely to be the magic bullet we all wish for. The evidence shows that it shouldn’t have high priority.

  9. Bart B. Van Bockstaele October 7, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    I think one of the problems is, that we don’t have many follow studies, giving systematic data on what happens when people forgo conventional treatment and go for alternative therapy instead.
    The alties (who really should do those studies) are really not interested in doing them (who needs followup studies when you can produce testimonials?).

    It’s better than that. Most alternologists claim that their methods only work when you believe in them. That means their methods never fail, for when they do, it was the patients fault for not believing hard enough.

  10. beatis October 7, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    It’s better than that. Most alternologists claim that their methods only work when you believe in them. That means their methods never fail, for when they do, it was the patients fault for not believing hard enough.

    Yes, the patient invariably loses all.

  11. wilmamazone October 8, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    Other quacks incredible bastards with their opinion:
    Dr. Joseph Mercola and Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez on Steve Jobs

  12. beatis October 8, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    Ah yes, Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez, of the “Gonzalez Regimen” for cancer.

  13. Cheryl October 8, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Cannibas is good when a patient is on Chemo/Radiation and losing their desire to eat. Personally I know 2 people who were dedicated cannibas smokers and one has Leukemia and the other died of lung cancer.

    My question is what does Chemo/ Radiation do to a human body? I’ve always heard it causes cancer. My Dad 2 weeks after his Chemotherapy. My belief is he would have lived longer and less sick if he had passed on the Chemo.

    Also, I would like to see a study done on very high doses of vitamin C given introveiniously. I’ve heard about some good results, but its too cheap for the medical industry, they can’t make enough money off of vitamin C.

    All the millions of dollars given to the cancer foundation over many years and yet … no cure, but we can put a man on the moon.

  14. wilmamazone October 8, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    Cheryl:

    All the millions of dollars given to the cancer foundation over many years and yet … no cure, but we can put a man on the moon.

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/category/cancer-cures/page/2/

    Why haven’t we cured cancer yet?

    Why haven’t we cured cancer yet?

    If we can put a man on the moon, why can’t we cure cancer?

    If we can harness the atom, why can’t we cure cancer?

    How many times have you heard these questions, or variants thereof? How many times have you asked this question yourself?

    Orac on the end:

    Does that mean I have no hope? Of course not! Otherwise, I wouldn’t keep doing what I’m doing. I am simply expressing humility in the face of a protean foe that has thus far withstood our best efforts to eradicate it. That does not mean that it will continue to do so. After all, never before have we had the tools that we have now to probe deeply into the biology of cancer at the whole genome level as we do today.

    Still, it will be hard.

  15. wilmamazone October 8, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    Cheryl:

    My question is what does Chemo/ Radiation do to a human body? I’ve always heard it causes cancer. My Dad 2 weeks after his Chemotherapy. My belief is he would have lived longer and less sick if he had passed on the Chemo.

    I’m sorry to hear about your Dad, but what do you believe cancer does without medical treatment?

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/chemotherapy-versus-death-from-cancer/
    Chemotherapy versus death from cancer

    quote:

    This time around, I wanted to touch on an issue that has come up frequently in the discussions of this case, and that’s the issue of chemotherapy. Specifically, it’s the issue of how horrible chemotherapy can be. Again, make no mistake about it, chemotherapy can be rough. Very rough. But what is often forgotten is that it can also be life-saving, particularly in the case of hematologic malignancies, where it is the primary therapy. What is also often forgotten or intentionally ignored by promoters of unscientific medicine is that doctors don’t use chemotherapy because they have some perverted love of “torturing” patients, because they’re in the pockets of big pharma and looking for cash, or because they are too lazy to find another way. They do it because, at least right now, it’s the best therapy science-based medicine has to offer, and in the case of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, for example, it’s life-saving. You can be sure that if a less harsh way were found to achieve the same results, physicians would jump all over it. Indeed, a major focuse of oncology research these days is to find less brutal regimens and improve the quality of life of cancer patients while still giving them the best shot at survival.

    Yes, chemotherapy can make you feel nauseated and make you throw up. It can make your hair fall out. It can temporarily depress the immune system. It can cause bleeding complications, such as GI bleeding. It can cause kidney damage. It can cause heart damage. It can cause lung damage. It can cause nerve damage. It can make you lose weight. It can even result in your death from complications. In short, it is not something to be used lightly. Unfortunately, the disease it’s meant to fight is a formidable foe indeed. It is your own cells, and all too often the difference between the toxicity of chemotherapy against the cancer and against normal cells is not that large.

    But what does cancer do? How do cancer patients die? They suffer and die in protean ways. Cancer can do everything chemotherapy can do (with the exception of hair loss) and more. I’ve seen more patients than I care to know suffer and die from cancer. I’ve seen family members suffer and die from cancer, most recently my mother-in-law last year.

    quote:

    Dying from untreated cancer can mean unrelenting pain that leaves you the choice of being drugged up with narcotics or being in agony.

    Dying from untreated cancer can mean unrelenting vomiting from a bowel obstruction. It can mean having a nasogastric tube to drain your digestive juices and prevent you from throwing up. Alternatively, it can mean having to have a tube sticking out of your stomach to drain its fluids.

    Dying from untreated cancer can mean bleeding because you don’t have enough platelets to clot. The bleeding can come in many forms. It can be bleeding into the brain, in essence a hemorrhagic stroke. It can mean bleeding from the rectum or vomiting blood incessantly. And, because so many transfusions are all too often necessary, immune reactions can chew up new platelets as fast as they’re infused. Yes, paradoxically, even when a cancer patient’s immune system is suppressed in late stage cancer, frequently it does work against the one thing you don’t want it to: Transfusions of blood products.

    Dying from untreated cancer can mean horrific cachexia. Think Nazi concentration camp survivor. think starving Africans. Think famine. Think having cheeks so sunken that your face looks like the skull underlying it.

    Dying from untreated cancer can mean your lungs progressively filling with fluid from tumor infiltration. Think choking on your own secretions. Think a progressive shortness of breath. Think an unrelenting feeling of suffocation but with no possibility of relief ever.

    Dying from cancer can mean having your belly fill with ascites fluid due to a liver chock full of tumor.

    Dying from cancer can mean a progressive decline in mental function due to brain metastases.

    Dying from cancer can mean so many other horrific things happening to you that they are way to numerous to include a comprehensive list in a blog post, even a post by a blogger as regularly logorrheic as I am.

  16. jli October 9, 2011 at 9:12 am

    I would like to see a study done on very high doses of vitamin C given introveiniously. I’ve heard about some good results, but its too cheap for the medical industry, they can’t make enough money off of vitamin C.

    Here is s summary of a phase II study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16570523
    In the full paper it says that none of the 24 patients responded (and only one had stable disease).
    The pharmaceutical companies don’t run the oncology departments. The oncology departments do not have unlimited budgets. If there were cheap and effective treatments they would be using them. And they are certainly not afraid to do studies on promising ideas.

    All the millions of dollars given to the cancer foundation over many years and yet … no cure, but we can put a man on the moon.

    As already mentioned in the links provided by Wilma, going to the moon is easy peasy in comaparison to finding a single efficient harmless cure of all cancers. Basically you only need sufficient propulsion to get on the way to the moon.

    Cancer is a collective term for approximately 200 different diseases. Every cell type in your body can (in principle) develop into its own type of cancer. On top of that individual cancer cells in every cancer are also different from one another. So it is not all that surprising that we don’t have, and most likely won’t find, a single cure for all cancers.

  17. wilmamazone October 9, 2011 at 11:54 am

    jli:

    If there were cheap and effective treatments they would be using them. And they are certainly not afraid to do studies on promising ideas.

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/vitamin-c-strikes-out-again/

    Vitamin C strikes (out) again

    I didn’t think I’d be revisiting this topic again so soon. After all, I wrote one of my characteristic magnum opuses (opi?) less than two months ago, when I asked whether a recent animal study had vindicated Linus Pauling’s belief that high dose vitamin C is a highly effective cancer treatment. After that tsunami of verbiage that can only be exceeded by my fellow blogger Dr. Atwood when he’s on a roll doing a multipart deconstruction of some woo or other, I thought it would be best to give it a rest for a while. I guess less than two months will have to be enough.

    The reason struck me as I was perusing the very latest issue of…..

  18. wilmamazone October 10, 2011 at 8:22 am

    Updates from David Gorski/Orac:
    Steve Jobs’ cancer and pushing the limits of science-based medicine

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/the-death-of-steve-jobs/

  19. wilmamazone October 10, 2011 at 10:53 am

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/10/nicholas_gonzalez_on_steve_jobs_if_only.php#more

    Nicholas Gonzalez on Steve Jobs: If only he had come to see me…

    quote:

    Mercola’s nonsense aside, let’s move on to Gonzalez’s nonsense. I must admit that I couldn’t watch the whole video; about 15 minutes in, I had to go to the transcript instead. And, because I’ve already written so much about Jobs, I’d like to emphasize that abusing Jobs’ memory is only part of what Mercola and Gonzalez are about in this interview, although they do that with gusto, in particular in this exchange:…..

    On the end:

    I find this entire rant very telling. The resentment is palpable. Gonzalez is clearly intensely envious of oncologists and very angry because he isn’t taken seriously. Of course, to be taken seriously, it helps to have the goods, as far as science goes. He doesn’t. What he has is an idea based on long-discredited notions of how cancer forms and grows that doesn’t work and harms cancer patients. He has chosen his path, the path of medicine not based on science, and now he is paying the price. He is not respected because he does not deserve respect. He is not taken seriously because he has not earned it. And he’s really mad about it.

    He’s not so angry, however, that he can’t recognize an opportunity when he sees one. Steve Jobs dies of a form of pancreatic cancer, and there’s his opening. He can tell some unverifiable story that some acupuncturist who was allegedly treating Steve Jobs after he was first diagnosed had urged him to go and see Gonzalez and that Jobs had declined. He can spread the claim that if only, only Jobs had listened and had come to see him, he could have saved Jobs’ life with his woo. Again, how convenient.

    On the other hand, it’s good for business, and the types who are prone to falling for Gonzalez’s woo will likely eat it up.

  20. jre October 13, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    It is only right to feel compassion for Steve Jobs, no matter what one thinks of his decisions, and it is only fair to withhold judgment when facts are scarce.
    Orac’s commentary on this subject has been both humane and measured, and deserves to be quoted.

    As to the alternatives, I don’t think I could ever smoke enough dope to take Joseph Mercola seriously.

    Just sayin’.

  21. wilmamazone October 21, 2011 at 10:16 am

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/10/20/60minutes/main20123269.shtml?tag=contentMain;cbsCarousel

    Biographer: Jobs refused early and potentially life-saving surgery

    (CBS News) Apple CEO Steve Jobs refused to allow surgeons to perform what could have been life-saving surgery on his pancreatic cancer, says his biographer Walter Isaacson. In one of his deepest discussions with him, Isaacson says Jobs told him he regretted his decision to try alternative therapies and said he put off the operation because it was too invasive.
    quote:

    “I think that he kind of felt that if you ignore something, if you don’t want something to exist, you can have magical thinking…

  22. wilmamazone October 21, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/10/did_steve_jobs_flirtation_with_alternative_medicine.php
    Did Steve Jobs’ flirtation with alternative medicine kill him? (update)

    A couple of weeks ago, in the immediate aftermath of Steve Jobs’ death, I took issue with the claims of a skeptic that “alternative medicine killed Steve Jobs.” At the time, I pointed out that, although it was very clear that Steve Jobs did himself no favors by delaying his initial surgery for nine months after his initial diagnosis, we do not have sufficient information to know what his clinical situation was and therefore how much, if at all, he decreased his odds of survival by not undergoing surgery expeditiously. To recap:……

    quote:

    So, until I can get my hands on the book (and actually have time to read it, or at least the chapters on Jobs’ illness), what can we reasonably conclude based on what is known now? First, my assessment changes only slightly. Based on this new information, it appears likely that Jobs did indeed decrease his chances of survival through his nine month sojourn into woo. On the other hand, it still remains very unclear by just how much he decreased his chances of survival. My best guesstimate is that, thanks to the indolent nature of functional insulinomas and lead time bias, it was probably only by a relatively small percentage. This leads me to point out that accepting that Jobs’ choice probably decreased somewhat his chances of of surving his cancer is a very different thing than concluding that “alternative medicine killed Steve Jobs.” The first statement is a nuanced assessment of probabilities; the latter statement is black-and-white thinking, in essence the mirror image of Nicholas Gonzalez’s claim that if only Jobs had come to see him he could have been saved.

    On the end:

    Unfortunately, aparently Jobs had his own medical reality distortion field that allowed him to come to think that he might be able to reverse his cancer with diet plus various “alternative” modalities. Ultimately, reality intruded, and Jobs realized he had made a mistake. It’s not clear whether his time in the medical reality distortion field ultimately led to his demise or whether his fate was sealed when he was first diagnosed. There’s just too much uncertainty ever to know, and even if he did decrease his odds of survival it’s impossible to say whether delay meant the difference between life and death in his specific case. What is clear is that no reality distortion field can long hold cancer at bay. Reality always wins.

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