IM of CNY
Dennis' Health Journey and Testimonial
My name is Dennis, I’m a 64-year-old male, and this is my journey.
I retired in January 2021 after spending over 30 years in the RF wireless engineering design field. My wife Julie and I owned a small organic farm and lived very healthy lives. We ate organic, exercised regularly, maintained healthy weights, never smoked and were active on our community, I was very active in veteran’s causes and was commander of our local “American Legion.” I served 6 years in the US Navy, served on 2 US Destroyers, and had one deployment to the Persian Gulf.
We sold our “mini farm” at the end of 2019 and moved to a house with less work closer to Rochester, NY where we could enjoy a long healthy retirement.
In July 2021 I noticed a small lump on the right side of my neck while shaving. I thought nothing of it, after doing some research my wife and I thought it was a swollen Lymph-node caused by an infection or virus.
In September 2021 I decided to see my local Dr. who thought it was a cyst and sent me to an “Ear, Nose, Throat” doctor. He too thought it was a cyst after the exam. He suggested a biopsy and to drain the cyst. In September I had the needle biopsy, and they drained a lot of fluid off my lymph-node and took several needle biopsies.
Several days later I received the biopsy results via the Doctor’s “online” portal. After reading the results my heart sank, the biopsies came back as “Metastatic Squamous Cell Carcinoma.” What a Slap in the face, at first I was stunned and shocked and was not sure what to say or do!
Now the long journey begins.
We made appointments with the Lipson Cancer center in Rochester. During the first visit. I was told that I needed chemo and radiation of my head and neck, and we needed to start immediately.
We did our research and learned that conventional chemotherapy and radiation kill most cancer cells and shrink tumors immediately, but this spared the cancer stem cells possibly resulting in relapse and metastasis.
With our first visit to the cancer center at Lipson, our nurse did not even know what a cancer stem cell was. We were so unimpressed that we sought out a second opinion at the Wilmot Cancer Center in Rochester.
So, we sought out a second opinion in October at the Wilmot Cancer Center. A very nice facility, we liked the Doctor’s and all the staff. We heard the same thing after our exam, don’t mess with this cancer because the surgeon said he has seen this cancer “take people out.” They could not find the exact site of the primary tumor in my throat where it spread to my neck lymph-nodes from. So I reluctantly agreed to undergo general anesthesia for biopsies of my throat. “Boy that was a mistake, or was it a Blessing in disguise?”
The day after my throat biopsy, my neck swelled up and I had a fever of 102. I was sick as a dog! I developed a massive infection in my throat that spread to my lymph nodes on the right side of my neck. So antibiotics were prescribed, and after a week the swelling started to go down. Then I was urged to undergo surgery and chemo & radiation. At that point we requested that Roswell Cancer Center in Buffalo review my case. After that appointment they said the same thing, chemo and radiation. Roswell told me that the cancer I had was stage 3 and had metastasized to my lymph nodes. What a horrid/scary thing to hear!
I was so scared that I went to get fitted for a radiation mask and had appointments for chemo and radiation setup. This was very hard to accept, so we “Asked God for a sign” what to do?
“THEN IT WAS DELIVERED”
We had a realtor friend who knew of a retired naval officer, she put me in contact him. He had the exact same cancer and same location I had it. He went through the traditional treatments, in speaking to him he was very clear (brutally honest) about the short and long term side effects of the head and neck cancer treatments.
He was not shy and very blunt about his side effects. Open neck sores from the radiation, teeth rotting, a total jaw replacement is planned, thyroid damage, feeding tube, blocked carotid arteries from radiation, not to mention the chemo side effects, neuropathy of this feet and hands. He was glad to be alive but said it was horrid with the side effects, they affected his “quality of life.” This retired naval officer ran triathlons before his treatments. Now he sits around and does not even think about those any longer. This scared me to death being a very active athletic person. My “quality of life” would not be the same ever again!
My RF engineering background really came to play with my decision, I knew exactly what ionizing radiation was and how it affected human cells. I was the “RF safety officer” for our local GE division and worked closely with the FCC on RF safety issues. I was very forceful in telling the Wilmot cancer radiologist that I did not want radiation!
The thought of the short and long terms side effects of chemo & radiation of the head and neck really pushed my wife and I look at “alternative” treatments that have been proven to be effective. We wanted to have a great “quality of life," not just to survive with the devastating side effects from chemo and radiation.
My wife lost her brother to cancer several years ago, he refused traditional treatments and did nothing. Also, I lost my mom to stomach cancer a few years back and she chose to not do chemo and radiation due to the horrid side effects. This really hit home with my wife, so she started watching videos, subscribed to cancer podcasts, read a lot, and really wanted to use all the knowledge she gained to help cure me, her devoted husband of 36 years. I agreed whole heartedly.
Over several months I kept hearing from the Wilmot Doctor’s telling me to come in for chemo and radiation. At one point I received 5 phone calls in one week. The more aggressive they were, the more I chided away from traditional medicine.
After extensive medical research we found the “Integrative Medicine of Central NY” practice. In November 2021, Dr. Puc, and her staff, accepted me as a patient. This was a blessing of an angel!
After our initial visit with Dr. Puc in November 2021, we learned a lot more about alternative cancer treatments, from Infusions, vitamins, diet and many supplements.
I started with blood work, PET, and CT scans for a baseline. The first treatments I did were Infusions (via IV) of Mistletoe weekly. Daily at home subcutaneous shots of Mistletoe and Hellebores. Along with weekly High Dose Vitamin C, plus over 2 dozen supplement pills daily.
Just a small sample of these supplements include Grape seed oil, Fish oil, Rosemary, Essiac tea, Zinc, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Turmeric, Curcumin.
Dr. Puc is one of only a few US Physicians that is working with renowned Dr. Johnson using Mistletoe therapy in the USA. My case was being reviewed weekly by both Dr. Puc and Dr. Johnson. Come to find out that Mistletoe therapy is used commonly throughout Europe, but the FDA has not approved it.
Dr. Johnson even published a book on Mistletoe therapy and its effectiveness on cancer!
"In this pioneering book, doctors and patients will discover the incredible power of mistletoe therapy and its foundational place within integrative cancer care. As this book demonstrates, plant-based supplements that stimulate the immune system's own power — such as mistletoe — are a welcome addition to current cancer treatments and may eventually become first-line treatments (with fewer side effects)
Kelly A. Turner, PhD, NY Times bestselling author of Radical Hope
Dr. Puc’s office is over 90 miles from our home, so making the drive twice a week during the winter months was a challenge. However, it was well worth the effort. During my treatments my bloodwork showed a decrease in the CEA levels, (cancer markers), also my inflammation levels decreased.
So in May of 2022 I had a PET scan to compare to the scan in 2021. Well this was a joyful event to read. My neck lymph nodes had shrunk by almost 30%, my throat metabolic activity was totally absent! It appeared my cancer was shrinking! Naturally I proceeded with the prescribed treatments and continued to feel great.
During all my treatments at Dr. Puc’s office I had the pleasure to talk to one of her Physician’s Assistants who is an Army Veteran. He urged me to file with the VA since the cancer I had was common for radiation exposure and asbestos exposure. So, on December 3rd, 2021 I filed with the VA, to date (September 2022) I am still in the system awaiting a decision. I handled and armed Nuclear weapons for 4 years and was involved with upgrades on one ship where I had direct exposure to asbestos for months. If my cancer claim is approved, I can file for some reimbursement for our costs.
These natural treatments are not covered by insurance! To date we are over $30K out of pocket, this includes insurance deductibles from my scans at local imaging facilities.
In our research and word of mouth we found another alternative practitioner close to our home.
We were blessed to find a natural health practice locally, “Surviving Naturally” and the Nurse Practitioner, Sandra. Her practice is only 9 miles from our house, Sandra was pleased to see me, and I proceeded with getting my High Dose Vitamin C infusions at her practice. I see Sandra regularly and she is following my progress almost monthly. I get alternate supplements from her practice as well, like Sea Cucumber, Inflamma, Revivin, and few other supplements. Sandra’s practice is growing and it’s great to hear some of her other cancer patients’ stories!
This is great information on 2 of the therapies I used:
“Using Mistletoe And Helleborus To Integratively Manage Cancer And Inflammatory Conditions"
With Dr. Puc’s prescriptions we used the pharmacy Uriel for all the Mistletoe and Helleborus supplies, infusion dosages, and home subcutaneous shots. I believe this is one of the few naturally recognized alternative pharmacies in the USA. Great service and quick delivery.
Since my diagnosis we learned a lot about diet and the power of the mind. I took up daily meditations using a cancer healing CD. There are many available you can find on the internet. My diet changed from good to even better, we only eat organic when possible. Chicken, fish and of course my own local harvested and butchered venison, and no fast or processed foods. We have a large organic garden and eat our own vegetables, “of course my wife says I need to eat more ;-)”. A big plus is the FACT you must have a great attitude and know that you are going to beat it! Sure, there were down days, but this was expected, overall I told all my friends that I was going to beat this and that I “HAD” cancer and did not “HAVE” cancer. Attitude is everything, even with my stage 3 metastasized cancer I kept a great attitude, even Dr. Puc and Sandra’s office said I was great patient with my attitude!
The days and months went by over the summer, we religiously did the weekly Mistletoe IV Infusions, daily shots at home of Mistletoe and Hellebores, and took dozens of supplements daily. I had regular bloodwork with the results all still improving.
We had a great summer with no cancer treatment side effects affecting my “Quality of Life.” The summer of 2022 was a great summer compared to what it could have been like if I had gone through chemo and radiation and the diminished Quality of Life side effects! As summer was winding down, I was on a short infusion break prior to my planned September CT scan.
In Sept 2022 I had another CT scan just before Labor Day. We anxiously awaited the results over the Labor Day weekend!
On Wednesday the 7th we met with Dr. Puc to go over the scan results. It was a JOYUS moment, Dr. Puc came out and uttered the words, “I consider you in clinical REMISSION.” WOW, Julie cried and I had tears of joy. It was a breath-taking moment for sure! Dr. Puc was very pleased with the continued shrinking of the cancer, and in all but one case my lymph-nodes were in the considered normal range and there was one only ~1mm outside the normal range. Dr. Puc stated I did not require further Mistletoe infusions and that I would continue with the home subcutaneous shots and supplements until years end. Then in December I would get a PET scan to just put icing on the cake before we winter in Florida. First time ever and a celebration of life for us both!
We shared this news with all our family and friends. Also, with Sandra and her staff at Surviving Naturally. Naturally the responses were very emotional. I even shared this news with the retired Naval officer I mentioned above, his exact response was, “that was money well spent because I would do that in a minute instead of what I went through, and am still dealing with.”
On the following day, September 8th, I attended our local American Legion meeting and shared the news. I was the previous “Commander” and had to step down due to my diagnosis from last fall. What unbelievable responses I got, a very joyous evening. The caveat for the evening was during the meeting there is a “sick call” for ailing legion members. I think there were 4 or 5 members all various ages who were all fighting cancer, and all were not doing well, and even on Hospice. Each one of them had gone through surgery, and several did chemo and radiation. It was a bittersweet evening; I am sitting there feeling great and several of my friends were basically dying. I had been fortunate enough to save money and have enough to be able to pay for my alternate treatments. It’s sad that modern medicine and big Pharma will not cover these alternative treatments.
I must send a sincere THANK YOU to all the staff at “Surviving Naturally” and "Integrative Medicine of Central New York.” They are all ANGELS!
Alternative Medicine does work, however, you must have a good attitude and be positive and know up front that you are going to “BEAT THIS.” Our diet and athletic lifestyle will not change, we still continue to eat organic and take supplements for the rest of our lives.
When I was first diagnosed, I set a goal to be cancer free so to attend my Navy Destroyers reunion in New Orleans in September 2022. These are my brothers I served with and was deployed to the Persian Gulf in 1981. Well as I write this our plane tickets are booked, and we leave September 15th to spend several days with my fellow shipmates.
Almost 1 year to the day when I was first diagnosed, I can say “my cancer is in REMISSION." ;-)
I am open to talking about this with anyone interested. Reach out to one of the practices I listed above, and they will share my contact information.
People need to know there is HOPE!