Treating cancer with Intravenous Vitamin C (IVC)

The idea of treating cancer with intravenous vitamin C (IVC) hit home with a number of HSI members who sent e-mails after reading the e-Alert “Just Getting Started” (4/11/06).

Here’s a question I received from a member named Louis: “You talk about IVC, but not as a treatment option for prostate cancer. What does IVC do to prostate cancer?”

The three case studies featured in “Just Getting Started” concerned kidney cancer, bladder cancer and lymphoma. But there is some evidence that vitamin C may be effective in addressing prostate cancer.

In a lab study that appeared in a 1997 issue of the journal Prostate, researchers inhibited cell division and growth of prostate cancer cell lines in vitro with vitamin C. Results suggested that, “ascorbic acid is a potent anticancer agent for prostate cancer cells.”

Apparently no human studies have been conducted in the nine years since that study was published, but I did find a recent article in the Brandon Sun (of Brandon, Minnesota), which Louis and others with prostate cancer may find helpful.

When Brandon resident Don Hemingway was diagnosed with prostate cancer last summer, he had no intention of treating the disease with surgery, chemotherapy or radiation. He immediately began weekly visits to a local clinic where he received IVC for $75 per visit.

The Brandon Sun reports that Hemingway is currently in good health overall, and has “shown a decline in the chemical marker associated with prostate cancer.” The marker (not named in the article) is almost certainly PSA: prostate specific antigen.

Hemingway told the Sun: “I’ve been taking my treatments and I haven’t missed a day of work. There’s no nausea, no upset stomach, no headaches. It’s so effective, inexpensive and non-toxic. It’s basically what we’ve been looking for for years in a cancer treatment.”

The key word above is “inexpensive.” It appears that no one is going to get rich off of IVC, so there’s not much mystery about why we’ve seen so little IVC research over the years. But that appears to be changing. The Sun article notes that research is currently underway at McGill University in Montreal to test IVC on cancer patients.

“Effect of Vitamin C on Prostate Cancer Cells in Vitro Effect on Cell Number, Viability, and DNA Synthesis” Prostate, Vol. 32, No. 3, August 1997,
“Fighting Cancer with Vitamin C” Brandon Sun, 4/3/06,