Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Spurge a cure for skin cancer

A friend sent me this link to a bbc story about the petty spurge - Euphorbia peplis which, as a gardener, I come across often. It is apparently successful in treating non-melanoma skin cancer such as Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC). I wish I had known about this 12 years ago when I was diagnosed with a BCC. I had to have surgery to remove it which was painful and required me to be off work for a couple of weeks while I healed. I still have the scar now. According to the article on

the skin lesions show complete remission in 41/48 (85%) of cases. If this was a drug it would be hailed as the next big thing and marketed for all it's worth. However, a natural plant or a compound derived from it cannot be patented so the pharma industry will not be interested. I will certainly keep an eye out for this now. I always knew these plants could cause a skin reaction as the milky sap they exude often causes a rash but how interesting that if used in the right conditions it can be beneficial. Homeopaths have a term for that; 'The law of similars'. Dosage is everything of course and the article specifically warns people about trying this for themselves. However, if I developed another I think I would give it a go. I have been using castor oil applied topically to any skin lesion (warts, dry skin) whatever, and find it very helpful. A lot of these old wives tales have some basis after all.

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