Fighting to Win!

Last week I went to Toronto to attend a “Bell Ringing Ceremony”.  Before I received the phone call invite from my niece who has been battling a cancerous brain tumor, I hadn’t heard of this particular event.   Here is the back story.   Cancer patients are subjected to 30 straight days of Radiation and Chemotherapy on an outpatient basis.    In the hallway, outside of the treatment rooms mounted on the wall is a brass “Celebration Bell”.  At the end of the treatment period, the family and friends of the patient meet at the hospital and help their loved ones “Ring the Bell”.

Next to the bell was a plaque that had the following saying.

“Ring this bell three times well – Its sound to clearly say – My treatment is done – This course is run – And I am on my way”.

Static Treatment

Before I went into the Juravinski Cancer Center in Hamilton Ontario, I sat on a park bench near the entrance to the lobby and watched patients come and go.  Many struggled on their way into the center, but more seemed to struggle after their rigorous treatments.   It was a very sad, moving and thought provoking experience.  However, it got me to thinking about cancer treatments and whether the day will come when there are less invasive methods to treat cancer, the number one killer in the world.   Back in Boston, I did a little research and found out that static electricity, which is considered as part of Natural Medicine is in consideration and going through clinical trials, especially in Japan.  Of course!!!

The thought behind using static electricity is nothing new to the medical community.  In the Reading Eagle newspaper, dated September 2, 1951, a retired military surgeon by the name of Colonel Francis Usher suggested the use of static electricity as a possible new cancer treatment.  His premise was that it would enhance existing treatments and possibly slow the growth or kill the cancer cells.

Back to the Future

Fast forward 60 years and many articles can now be found on using static electricity in the treatment of cancer and clinical trials are underway by a number or researchers.  In a paper presented by Philip H. Gutin, MD, and Eric T. Wong, MD, they wrote about Tumor Treatment Fields (TTF) claiming that TTF treatment or an electric field has a superior safety profile, and its minor side effects do not seem to overlap with those of cytotoxic chemotherapies, targeted agents, or anti-angiogenesis drugs. Therefore, the rational combination of TTF therapy with specific pharmacological agents may enhance tumor cell death.

The definition of an electric field is attributed to Michael Faraday in the 1820s and was later formulated by James Clerk Maxwell in his electromagnetic theory in 1865.   It is a field of electric forces that surround a source charge. When a test charge is placed within an electric field, a force acts on it because it is energy. By using a battery with a couple of wires on an AC or alternating current, tests are easy to conduct.   Negative charges attract positive charges, while similar signed charges repel each other.  Basically, two electrodes are placed at a given distance from each other on the human body in proximity to a tumor or cancerous cells.  Voltage is applied and the energy travels from one electrode to the other and has an effect on the bad cells in its path.   TTF therapy is now a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved treatment for patients who have exhausted surgical and radiation treatments.

Obviously, much more needs to be done, but it certainly feels good to serve an industry that not only has a long history in solving static problems, but one that has a future in the Medical Treatment of Cancer.  In the meantime, our Particle Trap® Cube is used to solve particle contamination problems in the packaging of Medical Devices that are utilized in hospitals and clinics.