Integrative Cancer Care
The Oncology Association of Naturopathic Practitioners (OncANP) describes naturopathic cancer care as: ”An important role in the support of people diagnosed with cancer through survivorship.”
Naturopathic Medicine can provide evidence-informed guidance on safe and effective use of natural and supportive therapies when combined with conventional treatment.
Frequently asked question about Naturopathic Cancer Care.
Can I combine conventional medicine and naturopathic Medicine? Do I have to choose?
Great news! You don’t have to choose. You have the option to combine naturopathic and conventional medicine. This can support the pursuit of best possible outcomes for patients.
The goal is to improve:
Quality of life
Manage side effects
Help speed recovery
Provide education for a healthy lifestyle.
Who would need Integrative Naturopathic Cancer Care?
If you had chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery. And if you have been recently diagnosed and want to optimize your health.
If you are currently undergoing conventional therapy and want to manage side effects.
If you have recently completed treatment. And you are are in the “Watch and Wait ”period (aka: Active Surveillance).
If you have a precancerous illness.
If you have a strong family history or personal history with cancer and want to look at prevention.
If you would have reason to believe you are at high risk of cancer and want to assess and address your risk factors.
Naturopathic Cancer Care – Dr. Kimberley Ramberan,ND Approach
Supporting an individual that has a diagnoses with cancer requires a specific interest. Being able to treat patients with cancer and being a part of their healthcare team is what I am passionate about. Impacting patients quality of life in my experience has be invaluable. My approach involves three phases that supports patients from prevention through to survivorship.
Phase 1: The Diagnosis
The diagnosis of cancer is often very emotional. There are a lot of decisions that have to be made in a short period of time. A diagnosis often indicates a need for change. That change can often feel overwhelming with all the information that is out there. I recognize the significant impact that a cancer diagnosis can have not only on an individual, but on their family. I see my role as assisting in managing your care and helping you make a decision based on you feeling like your informed as to the process ahead of you. This is also a time that we can work together to create a plan to optimize your health and get body and mind into a healthy place before even starting conventional treatment so you can be at your strongest. My goal is to provide advice on treatment options and answer your questions as to how naturopathic medicine can support you during this time.
Phase 2: The Treatment Period
The treatment period, although physically demanding and stressful on a person’s health, can be generally a very structured period of time with specific treatments, schedules and goals. It is also a time when a person generally (and hopefully) has a lot of loving support. The specific symptoms and side-effects that a person encounters depends on the specific type of cancer and the type of treatment that is required. Naturopathic medicine can provide supportive care for those undergoing chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery. For those where conventional therapy is not an option Naturopathic Medicine can play more of a primary-care role depending on the exact type and stage of the cancer. Supportive naturopathic care can include such therapies as IV Vitamin C, Mistletoe Therapy, herbal medicine, and first and foremost addressing root cause through the many tools Naturopathic Doctors have in their tool belt. These modalities can be used to minimize the side-effects and enhance the effectiveness of conventional treatment and most importantly improve quality of life.
Phase 3: The Recovery Phase
The recovery phase can last 3 to 5 years after the treatment period. As a naturopathic doctor, the “Watch and Wait” time period is seen as being incredibly important to prevent re-occurrence. I view this phase as a necessary time to support the natural healing ability of the body recovering from cancer treatments. It is also a time to reflect and address any contributing factors to disease and a time to adopt and maintain a more healthy lifestyle. Naturopathic doctors are the experts at supporting the natural healing ability of the body.