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Heather Hanks
Written by Heather Hanks

Reviewed by Physician Chu I Ta and Dr Eki Wari

Natural Remedies To Support Cervical Cancer Treatment

Cervical cancer is preventable with the vaccine. If you have been diagnosed, these natural therapies can support your treatment plan to help you recover quicker.

Cervical cancer min scaled

Cervical cancer is predicted to affect nearly 14,000 women in 2023. Of this number, over 4,000 women are expected to die.

Most cases of cervical cancer are attributed to infection with the Human Papillomavirus (HPV). Thankfully, with the availability of the vaccine against HPV, cervical cancer is preventable.

If you have been diagnosed with cervical cancer, treatment may include chemotherapy or radiation.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is effective in improving cancer treatment outcomes. It may enhance the body’s immunity, prolong survival rates and improve the quality of life in cancer patients, and reduce the side effects of many treatments.

Read on to learn how to use natural therapies to help support your cervical cancer treatment.

Cervical Cancer, According To TCM

A young woman sitting on her bed holding her lower back in pain
Chronic lower back and abdominal pain may be a sign of cervical cancer.

Real Medical Chief TCM Physician Chu I Ta explains that the main symptoms of cervical cancer are irregular vaginal bleeding, excess vaginal discharge, frequent and painful urination, and chronic lower abdomen and back pain.

“The ancient Chinese Medicine texts have classified the symptoms under metrorrhagia (uterine bleeding) (ben lou), leukorrhea (vaginal discharge) (dai xia), and abdominal mass (zheng jia).”

TCM Physician Chu I Ta

According to TCM, cervical cancer results from extreme emotional damage, Congenital Deficiency in the Chong Mai (Thoroughfare vessel) and Ren Mai (Conception vessel), or Invasion of “Six Evils” (Dampness)”.

“The pathological process involves the LiverSpleen, and Kidney zang-fu. The Deficiency syndrome is a disorder and imbalance of Chong and Ren Mai syndrome. This can be considered a disorder of genes and hormones. The excess syndrome is Heat-Damp Stagnation with toxic Blood Stasis syndrome.” 

TCM Physician Chu I Ta

How To Treat Cervical Cancer

In Western medicine, cervical cancer is treated with surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy based on the extent of the disease, which has many side effects, weakens the body, and kills cancer cells.

TCM can help to support the patient through this trying time. Physician Chu notes that TCM can be used in the following stages to support the journey of a cervical cancer patient: 

  • Recovery phase: “TCM remedies can help before, during, and after- surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and targeted therapy. The treatment helps to restore and attain a better recovery during or after Western treatment,” says Physician Chu. 
  • Loading phase: TCM therapies can also assist and improve the effectiveness of chemotherapy, especially in elderly patients who aren’t able to tolerate two or more chemotherapy drugs at the same time. TCM herbs can also have an anti-cancer outcome with lesser side effects. 
  • Preventive phase: “We often continue the treatment even after the cancer is gone to prevent a cancer relapse”, says Physician Chu. 
  • Maintenance phase: When the tumor does not go away with Western medicine, TCM remedies are given to control the growth of the tumor size and the progression of cancer.  

A trained TCM oncology physician prepares a treatment protocol complementary to Western Medicine treatment. Differentiating the syndromes and stages of disease development is the key to synergizing the therapies.

Post-surgery TCM treatment for cervical cancer

Many patients suffer from Qi and Blood Deficiency in Qi after surgery.

  • Ba Zhen Tang: For symptoms including a pale complexion, weak host body and limbs, shortness of breath, and sweating easily.
  • Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang: For patients with a weak Spleen and stomach.  

Radiotherapy with TCM treatment for cervical cancer

Radiotherapy is associated with Heat toxicity and Blood Stasis Stagnation.

  • Shao Yao Tang with Ba Zheng San: For symptoms of dry throat and mouth, a warm body with vexation; dull pain in the lower abdomen, abdominal distension, localized skin rashes, ulcers, and excess vaginal yellow discharge, which may accompany frequent urination, pain and blood in the urine.
  • Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan: For Qi and Yin Deficiency.

Chemotherapy with TCM treatment for cervical cancer

A young woman receiving IV therapy sitting next to a nurse
TCM can help support deficiencies that often accompany chemotherapy treatment.

Patients being treated with chemotherapy usually suffer from disorders in the Spleen and stomach due to the toxicity of the medicines. Physician Chu suggests using the following formulas to treat different deficiencies:

  • Xuan Fu Dai Zhe Tang with Ju Pi Zhu Ru Tang: For Spleen and stomach disorders.
  • Ba Zhen TangDang Gui Bu Xue Tang or Shi Quan Da Bu Tang: For Deficiency in Qi and Blood
  • Liu Wei Di Huang Wan: For Deficiency in Liver and Kidney Yin.  

Sometimes, enduring the treatment for a disease can be worse than the disease itself, as is the case with cervical cancer. Thankfully, traditional medicine does not fail to support Western therapies and improve outcomes.

References

  1. American Cancer Society. Key Statistics for Cervical Cancer
  2. Integrative Cancer Therapies. 2021. Adjunctive Chinese Herbal Medicine Treatment is Associated with an Improved Survival Rate in Patients with Cervical Cancer in Taiwan: A matched Cohort Study. [online] Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8721688/ 
  3. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2021. [online] Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8483916/ 
  4. Integrative Cancer Therapies. 2019. The potential o Chinese herbal medicines in the treatment of cervical cancer. [online] Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1534735419861693 
  5. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2022. Herbal medicines and natural products for genitourinary cancer treatment. [online] Available at: https://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2022/7728739/.

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