Can Bacteria Cause Cancer?: Alternative Medicine Confronts Big Science

Can Bacteria Cause Cancer?: Alternative Medicine Confronts Big Science

by David J . Hess (Author)


Growing numbers of cancer patients are exploring diet, food supplements, herbs, and nontoxic immunotherapies like bacterial vaccines as a means of therapy. Yet most cancer research organizations refuse to even evaluate these alternatives. Can Bacteria Cause Cancer? argues convincingly that unless this neglected world of alternative therapies is properly scrutinized, the medical Vietnam of the twentieth century may well affect one in two people by the twenty-first century. David J. Hess investigates one of the great medical mysteries of the twentieth century--the relationship between bacteria and chronic disease. Recently scientists have overturned long-held beliefs by demonstrating that bacterial infections cause many ulcers; they are now reconsidering the role of bacterial infections in other chronic diseases, such as arthritis. Is it possible, Hess asks, that bacteria can contribute to the many other known causes of cancer? To answer this intriguing question, Hess takes us into the world of alternative cancer researchers. Maintaining that their work has been actively suppressed rather than simply dismissed, he examines their claims---that bacterial vaccines have led to some dramatic cases of long-term cancer remission--and the scientific potential of their theories. Economic interests and cultural values, he demonstrates, have influenced the rush toward radiation and chemotherapy and the current cul-de-sac of toxic treatments. More than a medical mystery story, Can Bacteria Cause Cancer? is a dramatic case study of the failure of the war on cancer.



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More Information

Format: Paperback
Pages: 242
Edition: New Ed
Publisher: New York University Press
Published: 31 May 2000

ISBN 10: 0814735622
ISBN 13: 9780814735626

Media Reviews

Hess has made a careful study of one of the most intriguing themes that weaves through the recent history of unconventional approaches to cancer. Every researcher, physician, and general reader interested in this field should welcome this important and incisive contribution.

-Michael Lerner,President, Commonweal, and author of Choices in Healing

Explains why a significant body of scientific research has been largely ignored by cancer research institutions. Hess has clearly demonstrated the valuable role that social scientists can have in offering a neutral perspective on medical research and how it is shaped by cultural bias.

-Townsend Letter
Author Bio
David J. Hess is Professor of Anthropology in the Science and Technology Studies Department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His books include Science Studies: An Advanced Introduction (also available from NYU Press), Science in the New Age and Science and Technology in a Multicultural World.