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Immuno-Augmentation Therapy & Naltrexone

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Full Title: Best-Case Series for the Use of Immuno-Augmentation Therapy and Naltrexone for the Treatment of Cancer

April 2003

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Structured Abstract

Objectives: The primary objective of this project was to create a best-case series for two complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies for treating cancer patients: Immuno-Augmentation Therapy (IAT) and low-dose Naltrexone.

Methodology: The two CAM providers were asked to identify their best cases. The criteria used for a best-case series were based on those established by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Promising cases were identified and these patients were contacted to obtain permission for us to abstract their file and to be interviewed by telephone. For cases identified as "best cases" based on NCI criteria, all pertinent clinical data (radiologic scans, pathology slides, etc.) were requested from the original institution to confirm the cancer diagnoses and any progression of the cancer. The cases were then reviewed by the NCI Office of Cancer for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Main Results: For both therapies, it was extremely difficult to meet the full documentation requirements of the NCI best-case series criteria. For IAT, nine cases were found that we consider the most complete or appropriate in terms of the NCI criteria for a best-case series. For Naltrexone treatments, only three cases best met the NCI criteria. These cases represent the best that we were able to assemble using the currently accepted best-case method of the NCI.

Conclusions: Assembling documentary evidence for a best-case series through retrospective case analysis for CAM therapy will seldom meet the full NCI criteria. An alternative approach might be to establish a prospective case series.

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Best-Case Series for the Use of Immuno-Augmentation Therapy and Naltrexone for the Treatment of Cancer

Evidence-based Practice Center: Southern California
Topic Nominators: National Cancer Institute and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Current as of April 2003


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