Mistletoe therapy is widely used in patient-centered integrative medicine, and in cancer care in particular. Intravenous or injectable mistletoe is applied to stabilize disease, achieve responsiveness, induce fever, improve quality of life, and improve the tolerability of conventional cancer treatments. Doctors worldwide report long-term disease stabilization and improvements in patients' general condition, vitality, strength, thermal comfort, appetite, sleep, pain from bone metastases, dyspnea in pulmonary lymphangitis carcinomatosa, fatigue, and cachexia.
Mistletoe treatment is an essential part of integrative cancer care in many countries around the world. It is mostly used to improve quality of life, increase the tolerability of chemotherapy, and exert a possible benefit on tumor control and survival. Mistletoe extracts contain a variety of biologically active compounds such as lectins, viscotoxins, oligo- and polysaccharides and triterpene acids. They are cytotoxic, have strong apoptosis-inducing effects, enhance the cytotoxicity of anticancer drugs, stimulate the immune system, possess DNA-stabilizing properties in mononuclear cells, and enhance endorphins in vivo. In clinical practice, mistletoe extracts are usually applied subcutaneously, starting with low doses that increase according to tolerability and local skin reactions or to lectin content. Various clinical studies have shown improvements in the quality of life of patients with cancer, autoimmune disease, infectious disease and inflammatory disease.
Mistletoe therapy is not covered by insurance and is an out of pocket expense in the US.
Intravenous Mistletoe Treatment in Integrative Cancer Care: A Qualitative Study Exploring the Procedures, Concepts, and Observations of Expert Doctors, Gunver S. Kienle, 1 , 2 , * Milena Mussler, 1 Dieter Fuchs, 3 and Helmut Kiene 1 Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016; 2016: 4628287. Published online 2016 Apr 24. doi: 10.1155/2016/4628287. PMCID: PMC4860234 PMID: 27239209