Breast cancer confronts women with the most profound issues of vulnerability and womanhood. From the moment they receive their diagnosis, women are terrorized on the deepest level with the prospect of losing their breasts to the surgeon’s knife. This is just the beginning of many justified fears that arise when women surrender themselves and their precious breasts to orthodox oncologists. This is of course what every single human being suffers when given the cancer diagnosis independent of what type of cancer it is.
Dr. Daemond Jones wrote, “If there is one word that might sum up the overall feeling of dealing with breast cancer, it is ‘uncertainty’. There is uncertainty about what treatment is the best, how am I going to handle the finances, how is my body image going to change, will I ever get better? Uncertainty adds another level of stress to an already difficult situation. Some signs of stress are sleep problems, weakness and fatigue, body aches and pain, headaches, anxiety, and irritability. Finding ways to deal with the added emotional stress is important for keeping your spirits high during the process.”
Translated—when that doctor hands you that diagnosis and does little to nothing to help you handle these feelings he is allowing the cancer to explode and proliferate because the stress feeds the fire of inflammation, tumor growth and metastases. Bone and lung metastases are responsible for the majority of deaths in patients with breast cancer so it is critical to get stress under control. From the first day we need to pay attention to emotional and psycho-social factors because intense stress shortens the time to recurrence and death.
After a diagnosis of breast cancer, it is certainly understandable that women are stressed about their treatment plan and the ultimate outcome. A new study finds that women who were unable to cope with stress were more likely to experience cognitive declines—“chemo brain” even before chemotherapy started. Dr. Stephanie Reid-Arndt, an associate professor and chair of the Health Psychology Department in the University of Missouri, examined 36 women with breast cancer who had undergone surgery but had not yet received chemotherapy or hormone replacement therapy. Patients who were stressed and had passive coping strategies to deal with their stress (i.e., denial, disengagement, helplessness) were more likely to experience cognitive declines and performed lower on memory and attention tests.
A diagnosis of breast cancer is a great shock. Some of the feelings and emotions women commonly experience are:
Fear and shock
Physical responses to strong emotions
Physical responses to the overall stress may be:
Fear - trouble sleeping, headaches, body aches
Anger - change in blood pressure
Depression - fatigue, crying, feeling moody
Stress - pain, irritability, physical tension
Unresolved or unexpressed emotions may lead to other problems.
Your bottled-up emotions and all of these emotions and feelings can actually lead to more aggressive cancer and the increased probability of not surviving the cancer. The loss of a breast, or part of a breast, has an impact that goes beyond the physical fact.
It is normal to be concerned about:
Fear of recurrence
Loss of attractiveness
Difficulty with sexual function
Loss of fertility
Coping with and surviving breast cancer
A woman just diagnosed with cancer can improve her emotional health and reduce her physical symptoms with good coping strategies. A study published in the Journal of Psychosocial Oncology reports that women who get help with pain and emotional distress have lower levels of anxiety, fatigue and depression. A study published in the Journal of Personality shows that women with breast cancer who do express their anger, fear, sadness, and affection in a group setting live longer than women who suppress these emotions.
Normally good doctors recommend cancer patients to communicate deeply with family and friends but this is often ineffective because most people have terrible communication and listening skills. They suggest patients to maintain intimacy with your partner if you have one but many men and woman routinely have deep problems with intimacy.
No matter what a woman’s or any person’s situation is the first and best thing a woman or anyone just diagnosed with cancer can do it to blow bubbles! Not the kind that children play with but serious bubbles that one blows through a simple breathing-retraining device. Blowing bubbles is a serious treatment that can begin as soon as you are diagnosed. Better yet do not wait until you have to suffer from the diagnostic label and start breathing as a cancer prevention strategy.
Dr. Florent Elefteriou, J. Preston Campbell and colleagues used a chronic immobilization stress (CIS) model (immobilization for two hours a day, six days a week) to stimulate the sympathetic nervous system in athymic mice that were injected intracardially with a human bone metastatic breast cancer cell line. Mice subjected to CIS stress developed more and larger osteolytic lesions than control mice (no CIS), and showed an increased number of bone metastases.
 Journal of Psychosocial Oncology. Examining the influence of coping with pain on depression, anxiety, and fatigue among women with breast cancer. Published 2005.
 A laboratory mouse (from an inbred strain) that is hairless and has no thymic tissue. Because it has no source of T lymphocytes, it suffers from a defect in cell-mediated immunity and is highly susceptible to infections. This trait is utilized for immunological studies.
For addressing harmful stress, one needs to know about a fifty dollar breathing machine called the Frolov from Russia, a device that was originally designed for asthma sufferers. It will calm a person right down, bring stress hormones under control, and thus provide a new form of treatment for stress that will be highly beneficial for a person dealing with cancer. Later in this course/book there is an extensive section on breathing. The device will slow one’s breathing down and it would be a good idea, if one even thinks they have cancer, to have one before one even steps foot into an oncologists office.
Emergency room and intensive care professionals understand the importance of respiration. Oxygen and carbon dioxide are what stands between our life and death so our very next breath matters very much. It is only when we get close to death do doctors finally pay attention to our respiration.
Oxygen is the most prescribed medicine in hospitals but little to no attention is paid to carbon dioxide because medicine ill defines it as a waist product of metabolism. It is low levels of this essential gas (that plants love and thrive on) that constricts the blood vessels, which drives up blood pressure. We tap into carbon dioxide medicine with the use of bicarbonates and by slowing our breath down. The most complicated aspect of cancer revolves around CO2 physiology and we dive head first into that just before the sections on breathing.
Bottom line—the quicker we breathe the sooner we are going to die. The more our breathing races, the less oxygen we get, the quicker our bodies begin to suffer from one chronic aliment or another. Eight breaths a minute is very healthy though few breathe today slower than 12. Cancer patients tend to breathe at 14 to 25 breaths a minute.
Vernon Johnston cured himself of cancer (prostrate and bone) with good diet, sodium bicarbonate and four hours of conscious breathing a day. I have not talked to anyone in all the years since that has equaled his accomplishment (took him one month to be cancer free).
Most doctors will not talk to you about breathing but do not underestimate its power to relieve stress and help you beat your cancer.
This is the machine to use for your breathing retaining and it really is quite nice to blow bubbles as one increase the oxygenation of ones cells and tissues. Originally from Russia created to help asthma sufferers the Frolov breathing device is serious medicine.