Use of unproved cancer treatment by patients in a radiation oncology department: A survey

Jeffrey Goldstein, Celia Chao, Edward Valentine, Brenda Chabon, Lawrence Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


A survey of patients’ use of unorthodox cancer thera- Kies was conducted in the Department of Radiation Oncology of lontcfiorc Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine (The Bronx, New York) in the summer of 1988. Twelve percent of the patients interviewed used unorthodox treatments, including special diets, metabolic therapy, and mental imagery, while receiving radiation therapy. These patients tended to be white and well educated. None used harmful therapies or refused conventional treatment. These results are consistent with those reported in the literature. Patients view their physicians as an important source of information about their disease and are often willing to discuss unorthodox treatments with their physicians. The authors recommend thal physicians discuss the use of unconventional treatments with their patients in a noniudgmental manner and alert them to any po- lential risks associated with those treatments. They also suggest that physicians offer patients the opportunity to participate in clinical trials as an alternative to using unconventional treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-66
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Psychosocial Oncology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 3 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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