Medical Definition of Di Bella cancer therapy

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Di Bella cancer therapy: An alternative medicine cancer treatment program developed by Dr. Luigi Di Bella based on a drug cocktail containing a low dose of cyclophosphamide -- a chemotherapy drug -- plus other drugs and vitamins and given to more than 10,000 patients, nearly 100% of whom were allegedly cured.

The Di Bella therapy came to attention in Italy when some of Di Bella's patients organized and demanded that Italian hospitals provide the therapy free of charge. The Italian government funded a study of the Di Bella therapy. The results were "incompatible with the ... claim that (the Di Bella therapy) might represent a cure for any type of cancer."

Another research team reviewed the medical records of patients who had the Di Bella therapy. Virtually all had also had standard treatments. Compared with patients who had only standard therapies, patients who had the Di Bella therapy showed shorter (not longer) survival.

"Alternative medicine is a poor alternative to conventional medicine. By replacing worthwhile mainstream therapies, (alternative medicine) robs many people with potentially curable cancer of precious time and a chance for survival," wrote Dr. Paul Calabresi of Brown University about the Di Bella therapy.

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018

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