Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Living for today...

"Wan kena tunggu Afzal balik tau. Tak lama lagi nih, sebulan je lagi. Wan tunggu tau.." [Grandma, please do wait for my return. It won't be long now, just a month to go. Please do wait for me.]

"Insya Allah Afzal..." [God willing, Afzal.]

It was May 2007. I was in Sheffield, UK, speaking over the phone to my Grandma who was in Malaysia. Wan had taken ill over the last few months, and her condition had been worsening over time. The prognosis given by the doctors weren't good either. I was praying that time would pass by fast so that I could board that flight back home, scheduled around mid-June, less than a week after my term exam, just so that I can see Wan again.

When I reach Malaysia, I've made plans to bring Wan around, to cheer her up. I've planned to explain to Wan about her illness based on the medical knowledge I've gained from my studies. Plans lined up, specially for my dearest Wan.

But all plans were shattered, with only less than two weeks before my scheduled flight. Wan could not wait any longer. Her time had come.

Wan died, of cancer. I was gutted.


Ever since I achieved good grades in my SPM [GCSE-equivalent] examination, my burning desire to become a doctor lightened up even more. By the will of Allah, I succeeded in my A-Levels examination and received an offer to pursue Medicine in the University of Sheffield, United Kingdom in 2004.

Things were going as planned for the first 4 years of my studies. I've done relatively well, and by the time I entered my final year, I was already looking forward to holding that scroll I've dreamed for so long.

Chasing a dream...

But that was when I encountered my first major setback in life. December 2008, I developed a neck lump and was feeling generally lethargic. Then came the news I never expected, when I was diagnosed with a cancer. It's Hodgkin's lymphoma. I started having doubts about achieving my childhood dream of being a doctor.

I battled through series of chemotherapies and numerous invasive procedures over the next 6 months. Nausea, vomiting and sheer tiredness accompanied my journey as a final year medical student. In the end, I managed to complete my studies and passed my final year examination.

Treatments were over by early June, I've passed my finals and already was I making plans on starting my career as a doctor in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. But when my doctor repeated a PET scan in July 2009, I encountered my second huge setback. The cancer has relapsed, and further treatment was required, of stronger dosing.

I had to abandon plans of starting work in Malaysia and remained in the UK for further treatment. They had to implant a tube into my chest [Hickmann line] which remained for almost 3 months. Throughout that period, I battled through stronger chemotherapies and worse side effects. I had terrible mouth ulcers that I could not get any foods down. My immunity was so low that I got infected several times, one of which was quite bad that I went into septic shock.

In the end, I pulled through the difficult times and completed my treatment by the end of November 2009. I believed things would get better from there on, and I was already planning on working in the UK whilst having continuous monitoring for my condition. At least, I get to practice as a doctor, and start earning some money to build for a bright future.

Creating a path for a brighter future

But that was when came the third major setback in my life. I was only two months down the recovery lane, and I started to feel the neck lumps growing back again. That was when they found out my cancer has relapsed yet again. To make it worse, the clinicians felt that they have exhausted all the curative options available.

Eventually, I returned home to Malaysia, with a bitter pill to swallow.


Living with cancer is like living on the edge. You never know when will the symptoms flare up, what symptoms might I experience next, whether the improvements I experience will be long lasting or not.

Somehow, I have been slightly 'traumatized' with making future plans. Should I really think about how my career as a doctor will pan out after 5, 10 years down the line? Or about making financial savings from now on, so that I can buy a car of my own when I start work in the future? Should I even think of having a family of my own in the future, raising my own kids and see them grow to become successful people in life?

"Our Lord, bless us with wives and children, who may be the comfort of our eyes, and make us leaders of the righteous." [25:74]

When another person talks about his future dreams of having a successful career in life, a beautiful and pious wife with lovely kids, or living in a house of their own, I failed to share the same exuberance that the person is experiencing. Because if you ask me what would my dream be, it will be none other than this;

I wish to become well again. It must have been so long that I'm ill, it's hard to even imagine how it feels to be fit and well again!

It was painful when my plans for Wan were shattered.

It was painful when the setbacks I experienced time and time again over the last 2 years ruined the plans I've made.

This experience has taught me a lesson. I live for today and what I can do for today, not in the past nor in the future. Some people say that planning is invaluable, but plans are worthless. While I don't fully concur with such sayings, I still find some wisdom in it.

Because my journey in life has taught me that my future may not be what I have planned.

I live for today, and I try to reap whatever happiness I can gain from the day. If I keep myself occupied thinking about the so-called future happiness of a good career, a big house, a big car, etc, then I will miss out on the happiness that would be gone forever, and that is TODAY!

I think it is time I stop dwelling on things I have yet to acquire, but to cherish every little things I used to overlook all these while. Enjoy today, because it is not coming back.

"No matter what looms ahead, if you can eat today, enjoy the sunlight today, mix good cheer with friends today, then enjoy it and bless God for it. Do not look back on happiness or dream of it in the future. You are only sure of today; do not let yourself be cheated of it." -Henry Ward Beecher

Wallahua'lam [And Allah Knows Best]

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Face it with a smile

Hadapi dengan senyuman [Face it with a smile]
Semua yang terjadi [Whatever that happens]
Biar terjadi…. [Let it be...]
Hadapi dengan tenang jiwa [Face it with calmness]
Semua… kan baik baik saja [That everything will just be fine]

Bila ketetapan tuhan sudah ditetapkan [When Allah's decree has been finalized]
Tetaplah sudah…. [Then it is final...]
Tak ada yang bisa merubah [Nothing can change it]
Dan takkan bisa berubah [And it will never change]

* An excerpt from the song "Hadapi Dengan Senyuman" by Indonesian band Dewa.


I remembered when I was about 10 years old, my dad brought the three of us Mas-es for 'berkhatan' [circumcision] in a clinic nearby our home. It was one of the event I least looked forward to, as I've been hearing all sorts of horror stories about circumcision from my schoolmates. When the three of us wondered as to who should be circumcised first, it was then decided that my brother, Mas Affendi aka Andi would go first, being the eldest among the three of us. I, trying to be brave, volunteered to go second and my other brother, Mas Jaffri aka Jep, would be the last in turn.

The three Mas-es [from L-R : Jep, Me, Andi]

About 10 minutes passed by and Andi exited the doctor's room, holding the tip of his kain sarong, with a smile in his face. The smile that gave me the assurance that things were going to be fine, and that there was nothing for me to be anxiously worried of. So my turn came and I entered the room with my mom, greeted the doctor, and lied down on the patient's bed. Things seemed to be going quite well, I thought.

Until it was time for the injection of the local anaesthetic.

I was given three injections, and with every injection, I screamed my lungs out and cried, really just being a baby. I swore everyone in the clinic could hear me screaming. The person I pity most at that very moment was obviously Jep, who was the next in turn. And having heard me screaming in pain, I was quite impressed to know that he didn't actually ran out of the clinic.

After a slightly longer session than Andi due to the slight commotion I've created, the circumcision was finally done. As I was about to exit the doctor's room, mom told me to smile. Smile so that I could convince Jep that it wasn't that painful after all. That was probably the most fake smile I've ever made to someone in my whole entire life. Hehe.

Thinking about it again, I remembered how significant my brother's smile was. Although I still cried during the procedure, things might have been worse had it not been for his smile. The smile was so powerful, it erased any fear I had and uplifted my confidence to face what lies ahead of me. It was simply a movement of several facial muscles, but its effect in calming the heart was stronger than whatever medicine one can think of.

A few days after I found out from my doctor that my condition has worsen and that it was entering into a terminal stage, a few friends visited me at my home in Sheffield. We had a good chat, I pulled some jokes and recalled funny memories that made us laughed hard. At that very moment, one of my friend looked at me, in a rather puzzled manner. He asked,

"Mas, how can you still pull a brave face and be laughing when your illness has gone worse?"

I could only muster a smile. It's funny to think that a lot of people seemed to have this seemingly preconceived belief that it is wrong for someone to have a good laugh or smile when afflicted with a serious illness. That the surroundings should always be dark and gloomy, and nothing but only sad tunes can be played over the radio.

This is such a wrong attitude. Whenever something bad comes to you, you decided to cry and whine over your luck. You create an environment that mirrors your sadness, and tell the whole world how unlucky you are.

Now sit down and ask yourself; by doing such things,

Is your problem solved?

Can you reverse whatever bad has happened to you?

Is the burden any lesser?

Or are you just making the problem doubly worst now?

You can choose not to make your problems worse!

I know I have a cancer, and that all treatments have so far not worked. I admitted it is a problem. The problem has happened, and I can do nothing to reverse it. So I need to try and solve my problem, by doing things I believe can help my cause.

Which is why I decided that life must go on, and I must appear to others as if there is nothing wrong with me. As if I am perfectly healthy, and that is portrayed by my smile and jovial mood whenever I meet people. Because when I smile, I know the people around me will reciprocate. They will then create that perfect, happy and healthy environment for my wellness.

But if I put on a sad face, people might think that I will be offended if they smile at me. So they reciprocated with grieving faces, further exacerbating my already shattered emotions. And there you have, an environment similar to a funeral proceedings.

A strong mukmin is better and more beloved to Allah than a weak mukmin, but there is goodness in both. Rise to secure good for yourself, seek Allah’s help, and do not be weak. (Narrated by Muslim)

What we need in the face of adversity, is a smile. When one smiles, you show to people that you BELIEVE. And when you have the belief, people too will share the same optimism. When belief is in the air, then it can only help you in whatever struggle you face in life.

Hadapi dengan senyuman [Face it with a smile]
Semua yang terjadi [Whatever that happens]
Biar terjadi…. [Let it be...]
Hadapi dengan tenang jiwa [Face it with calmness]
Semua… kan baik baik saja [That everything will just be fine]

Bila ketetapan tuhan sudah ditetapkan [When Allah's decree has been finalized]
Tetaplah sudah…. [Then it is final...]
Tak ada yang bisa merubah [Nothing can change it]
Dan takkan bisa berubah [And it will never change]

Face your problem with a smile =)

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

It's The Climb

Whenever I was warded in the hospital for the treatment of my condition, I encountered a lot of patients who were in the same boat as mine. Whenever I had the chance, I will never miss the opportunity to talk to them, to hear what they have to say about their predicaments. We all have cancer, but of different types, and with different stories. But we all have one thing in common. We all believed in the power of Hope.

Hope. A powerful healer that sometimes even our mind could not comprehend with. It is the physician of each misery. With hope, seemingly impossible things can turn into reality.

As one famously said,

"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying even when there seemed to be no hope at all."

I always tell myself to never give up, even when I hit bumps over and over again. Even if I have to lose this battle, I believe what matters more is the struggle. It is the things I've learnt throughout my struggle that has shaped me into who I am, not the disease, neither is the outcome of this battle.

I can't help but appreciate one very strong sayings in the lyric of the song entitled, "The Climb";

Ain't about how fast I get there,
Ain't about what's waiting on the other side,

So everyone, stop asking, "Why?" anymore but start to say "What have I learned from my experience?". And things, no matter how bleak they might look, will soon start to brighten up. Insha Allah.

Do watch this video, specially for everyone. Enjoy!

Monday, 19 April 2010

That Talk I Will Remember...

I could still remember vividly that moment when I got a phone call from a dear friend of mine, Firdaus Rahim, a medical student in the University of Nottingham. Firdaus invited me to share some tips on surviving as a university student for the new Malaysian students who have recently arrived in the United Kingdom for their respective studies. But more importantly, Firdaus requested that I share a portion of my experience as a university student living with a disease anyone will dread hearing, CANCER.

I have always been the type of person who loves to share to others, especially on things I know people can benefit hugely from. As eager as I was to share my experience to the new fellow Malaysian students, I had a difficult decision to make.

When the invitation from Firdaus came, I had only just finished my ESHAP chemotherapy a week back, and was still very much recovering from tiredness and all the other associated side effects of the medication. Looking at the date of the talk (which was on the 17 October 2009), I wasn't sure if I've had enough rest to deliver my talk. Furthermore, the location of the talk was about 45 minutes drive from Sheffield, so that further complicated the issue as I would then need to travel out of the city.

Having given a deep thought about it, I knew there could only be one answer. I WANTED to deliver the talk. This is my opportunity to not only share my humble experience, but also educate people about my disease. So I gave the thumbs up to Firdaus, and prayed to Allah that He make things go smoothly for me.

I rented a car and drove it to Welesby Forest, Nottinghamshire, where the event took place. My talk was scheduled at 8pm, and I gave an hour and a half talk to the participants present. By the time the event for that night finished, it was already around 11 pm, and I was contemplating on staying there for the night. However, given the cold weather and the less than conducive accommodation, I decided to return to Sheffield that same night, for fear I might catch unwanted infections and affect my recovery from the recent chemotherapy. As I reached Sheffield around 1 am, I barely had much energy left. But it didn't matter. I was happy that I could share something so profound to me, to my fellow friends, with the hope that they will gain many benefits from it.

And now, almost 7 months down the line, I thought that I should share it to more people. Thus I consulted the person responsible for producing the video clip of my talk, Hanafi from the University of Leeds, if he wouldn't mind me sharing some of the clips of my talk. Hanafi was more than happy for the clips to be shared, and here are some of them...

1. Introduction

2. My big test in life

3. Approaching our trials via the teachings of the Quran

As the talk was quite a long one, I have decided to cut it into several segments, all carrying different themes. The three shown above are the first few I've uploaded on YouTube, and insha Allah I will try to upload some more of the clips in the near future.

There will inevitably be mistakes or shortcomings in the content of my talk, and I therefore beg forgiveness from everyone. My only wish is for everyone watching them to benefit from this little knowledge I have, from this precious experience I've gone through, and from this passion I have for 'giving to others'.

Barakallahu fiik!

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Let thy food be thy medicine

A lot of people have been asking me on the diet changes I've made ever since I posted my last entry entitled "What should I eat Doctor?". The diet changes I've decided to make so far are based on my personal readings and are supported by evidences I find convincing enough for me to rely upon. Having said that, I think it is imperative that anyone reading this entry make their own informed decision, and to not follow blindly whatever I will recommend in the next few paragraphs.

To avoid turning this entry into one long, dry and winding piece of scientific article on diet recommendations, I have also decided not to elaborate too much on every diet changes made. Rather, those interested to read further on the evidences behind every diet recommendations can refer to the list of books I've listed on my footnote.

Now that I've made my disclaimer note, let me personally share the diet changes I've made thus far. These changes can definitely be further improved, but it will take some time. I must admit that apart from eating fruits, my diet has always not been one to emulate from. Therefore converting myself into quite a healthy diet regiment will certainly require time, discipline and patience.

Diet change #1 : Reduce your sugar intake, SIGNIFICANTLY.

I try to avoid taking any refined sugar in my diet. There have been some significant evidence-based research showing that sugar, when taken in significant amount, can stand in the way of cancer recovery:

a. It suppresses the immune function.
b. It feeds cancer cells, through physiological changes initiated in the body when sugar levels are raised in the blood. [relationship between insulin, IGF, and cells in the body]

I therefore try to avoid any foods with refined sugar, wherever possible. Or foods with high content of sugar, for that same matter.


Ice creams =)

Malaysian delicacies, particularly the ones high in sugar content

Do you know how much sugar are there in a can of carbonated/fizzy drink?

Diet change #2 : Avoiding foods with high salt content, chemical flavorings and preservatives, especially monosodium glutamate(MSG).

Nowadays, whenever mom and I pay a visit to the supermarket, we will take extra time reading off the ingredients of the foods we'd like to purchase. Look at the nutrition facts of the food; how much salt and sugar is inside the food?

Reading food labels is tedious but worth spending time in.

For us, any foods containing MSG is a definite NO-NO. I am quite surprised to find out that quite a lot of the foods we commonly consume on a daily basis contains MSG, some of the food being so well-known that I might get suit if I openly mention the name of its brand (it really isn't rocket science to figure out which food i meant!).

On the same breath, I have also decided to abandon any fast food outlets mushrooming in the shopping complexes in our country. Regardless of whatever they say, fast food is fast food. High in salt and preservatives. Ever wonder why Americans have the highest percentage of obese people within their population?

Have you ever watch this documentary before? Watch it, see what you think afterwards.

Diet change #3 : Whites out. Whole foods in.

What I mean by white foods are those foods with simple carbohydrate that simply turns into sugar when ingested. Since 2 months ago, I've been having more whole foods instead of the 'white foods'.

i. White bread ---> Whole grain bread

ii. White pasta ---> Whole grain pasta

iii. White rice ---> Brown rice

Diet change #4: Change in meat consumption

This is personally one of the difficult changes I have to make in my diet regiment. At present, I refrain myself from taking any beef or lamb. As with chicken, I only consume ayam kampung, where the chickens are not injected with any chemicals to boost their growth. As with fish, there isn't really much restrictions.

Diet change #5 : Avoid dairy products in my diet, especially the ones with high content of fat, animal protein and hormones.

I generally avoid taking conventional milk, butter or margarine, eggs, etc in my diet. If there is a need, we will substitute them with non-fat dairies including soy milk, cottage cheese and yogurt, to name a few.

Diet change #6 : Using virgin olive oils as main cooking oil.

Olive oil, or known as the 'green tea' of Mediterranean diet, has often been recommended as the preferred choice of cooking oil in anyone's diet. Particularly when it is virgin, olive oil has been shown in some studies to contain antioxidants that are linked to slowing the progression of cancer.

If only olive oils are sold at a cheaper price in the supermarkets!

Diet change #7 : Drink plenty of pure water

As stated in Greg Anderson's book entitled "Cancer : 50 Essential Things To Do",

"It is almost a universal truth - people with cancer are dehydrated. Lack of water inhibits immune function, the most potent defence you have against cancer.

Fluid must be continually replaced in appropriate quantities for you to be optimally well."

The best pure water, as has been shared by a few people to me, is the zam-zam water. And this information is not only shared by Muslims, but is also acknowledged by non-Muslims alike. If possible, try to install a water purification system in our home, to make sure that the water we drink is as purified as it can get.


All of the above are some of the several changes I've started to introduce in my diet regiment. I can understand that some of the questions that will be raised include,

If I can't eat the foods above, then what other food options do I have left???


But these healthy diet changes cost a lot of money! Lucky if you can afford it, but what about everyone else???


There is no harm in eating whatever you want, as long as you take it in moderation!!!

I hope that I am not preaching people into subscribing my belief of a good diet regiment. The choices I've made above can certainly be questioned/debated, but that is not my main purpose of sharing this piece of information. At the end of the day, as I've mentioned before, YOU have to make a decision on what is best for your health.

If that means sacrificing extra money for a better health, then why not? Inevitably, money will always be an issue, and I therefore leave this difficult question for ourselves to answer.

If you really believe in taking things in moderation, then please do so, but just be aware that I've seen so many people who succumb to temptations, and the so-called principle of MODERATION just goes out of the window. Having said that, moderation in what you eat is never a bad principle to adapt to.

Finally, let me just reiterate that the diet changes I've made SHOULD NOT be followed blindly. Do make your own research and background reading, just so that I don't mislead people into false information, naudzubillah(may Allah protect me from such circumstance).

May everyone gain the benefits from the information shared, insha Allah (God Willing).

References :
1. Anti Cancer - A New Way of Life (David Servan-Schreiber)
2. The Cancer Prevention Diet (Michio Kushi with Alex Jack)
3. Cancer : 50 Essential Things To Do (Greg Anderson)

Monday, 12 April 2010

What should I eat doctor??

When I was having regular chemotherapy treatments about a year ago, I remembered one particularly important conversation I had with my doctor during one of our clinic appointments.

I asked him if there is anything in particular in my diet that I should avoid taking, or change, to help with my recovery from cancer.

My doctor replied, "No Mas, just eat whatever you feel like eating. But try to avoid take-aways, just so that you don't catch any food infections given that you are immune-compromised."

With all due respect to my doctor's expertise and knowledge, I think that was when I made a mistake. I took him at his words that I should do nothing with my current diet. Thus I wasn't too bothered to even look up at the importance of the right diet in the battle against cancer. I take a a lot of fruits and juices anyway, so my diet couldn't be too bad, could it?

What has diet got to do with battling against cancer?

I'm not too sure about other medical schools, but as far as I can recall, diet change wasn't much talked about as part of the holistic treatment in cancers. The focus was more on teaching us to consult patients with cancer about how the chemotherapies work in killing cancer cells, etc, which is obviously important, no question about that.

But not about how diet can play a part in preventing the cancer from worsening. Well, some might argue that such emphasis on diet might suit more to the job scope of a nutritionist than medical doctors.

Whatever it is, I still personally feel that there are some diet tips that can be of no harm for doctors to be aware of, so that they can share it to patients with cancer. If one believes that the approach to tackling cancer is a holistic approach, then diet has to be one of its component.

Given the evidence-based medicine (EBM) heavily emphasized in the world of medicine nowadays, we have to be careful in what we say to patients. When I want to talk to my patients about how diet can play a part in tackling cancer, my advice should be based on sufficient evidences supported by scientific methods.

Have you got proofs to back what you are saying, doc?

Back when I was having treatments in the United Kingdom, I did nothing but relied solely on the hospital medications. I was the passive passenger, letting the clinicians decide what is best for me. But now, I can no longer play a passive role in the fight against MY OWN illness. Time to play a more active role. I know I have to take charge. Survivors take charge.

Ever since my return to Malaysia, I have started to make some major adjustments to my diet. All as part of my holistic approach in my fight against Hodgkin's Lymphoma. The change has not been easy I must admit, as I have to discipline myself against taking foods I used to enjoy so much in the past.

My mom is certainly playing a huge role too, adjusting the way she cooks so that it fits into the changes I have made in my diets. Only Allah knows how difficult it must have been for her at the beginning, but I know my mom is an expert cook that she will always be able to improvise her way of cooking to suit my diet regiment.

As I have mentioned in one my previous entries entitled "Making decisions in life", we can never shy away from having to make important and crucial decisions. Decisions about our own life. And today, I have decided that my battle against cancer is more than just eating the right medicines. It is also about eating the right, healthy foods. Eating right starts with your decision. Decide!

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

What, alternative medicines???

"Encik, sebelum ni encik gunting rambut sendiri sampai botak ka?" [Sir, did u previously cut your hair to bald?]

"Eh, macammana awak boleh tahu?" [How did you know?]

"Rambut encik tak rata. Kenapa encik nak bagi botak rambut? Tak sesuai untuk encik." [Your hair is not growing back evenly. Why have you decided to go bald? I don't think it suits you.]

I could only mustered a smile to the question. Shall I go down the long, winding explanation of having gone through chemotherapy for a year and a half, or make this conversation simple and not less comfortable? I replied,

"Saja nak tukar imej la bos," [Well, I thought I could do with a bit of a change.]


For the next half an hour, I was reminded again of that one-year-and-a-half experience of going through chemotherapies. Memories most of which were obviously bitter, of dealing with the after effects of the cytotoxic drugs.

Chemotherapies do not necessarily work in all cases, but they are undeniably the hospital's current mainstay of treatment along with radiotherapy and surgery in the fight against cancer.

How can I ever forget the times when I started to vomit straight away the moment one of the chemotherapy drug was injected into my veins.

Or when I would spend hours in the bathroom, cleaning up my falling hairs from clogging up the plug hole.

Or the time when I lost 7 kilograms within just 5 days when I was in the hospital, due to severe mouth ulcers as a result of the side effects of one of the chemotherapies.

Or when I was battling for my own life when I had a septic shock whilst having the high dose chemotherapy, that they even considered to transfer me to the High dependency unit (equivalent of Intensive Care Unit or ICU that most are quite familiar of).

Those moments were tough. Thinking of it again, I genuinely believed that the only reason I managed to persevere through all those experience was due to the constant supplications of my family members, friends, as well as those who prayed for me although hardly knowing me.

1. The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, "Three supplications will not be rejected (by Allah (SWT)), the supplication of the parent for his child, the supplication of the one who is fasting, and the supplication of the traveler." [al-Bayhaqi, at-Tirmidhi - Sahih]

2. The prophet (SAW) said: 'There is no believing servant who supplicates for his brother in his absence where the angels do not say, 'the same be for you'' [Muslim]


I am currently still undergoing non-conventional treatments in my battle against Hodgkin's lymphoma. I have decided that my body needs a break from further intensive chemotherapies.

Coming from a medical background myself, it is certainly not easy to convince myself to not commence on further conventional medicines (ie chemo, radiotherapy, etc). I was even questioned by some people, most of which were understandably doctors themselves, about the decision I've made, which they felt could possibly be detrimental.

But I asked myself time and time again; It's not that I've not tried the conventional medicines. Chemotherapies were what I had for the last year and a half, nothing else. But my body just didn't seem to response at all to the drugs, rather the cancer seems to be worsening by time.

So does that mean that I am giving up on chemotherapies? No, certainly not. But I just feel that this is the best time that I try on something else, an alternative to the conventional medicines.

The thing about alternative medicines are that they probably don't show benefits as immediately as chemotherapies, which can be frustrating especially for people eager to find quick cure to their sufferings. They take time to work, and people undergoing alternative medicines really need to be patient. But understandably some people with terminal cancer really do not have the luxury of time, and therefore waiting for the medicines to work is just a torture.

Alternative medicine : Do they really have a place in the cure of cancer?

I hope people can comprehend that it is not an easy decision for me to commence on alternative medicines rather than well-known conventional treatments. What more they are rarely supported by adequate scientific proofs (ie medical journals, etc) but rather just hearsays. Will it work? How long should I wait? It is not a position you would want to be in, wouldn't you?

But the best I can do at the moment is to BELIEVE that for every disease, Allah has provided its cure. So we MUST seek for it with as much effort as possible. Not to sit down and despair about my predicaments. That will not do any good, neither will it cure my disease. Jangan mengaku kalah dengan kata-kata syaitan.

At least, its comforting to listen to what my grandma told me when I visited her last weekend,

"Penyakit ni biasalah, dia datang macam angin ribut, tapi dia pergi macam semut!" [It's typical of a disease, that they afflict you as quick as a thunder, but will disappear as slow as an ant]

How true can you be dear Grandma.