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The overwhelming medical opinion is that laetrile, (as a cancer treatment.) is worthless..
But a number of cancer victims insist on using it, nevertheless..believing that nothing else offers them any hope.
It is illegal to prescribe it in most of the states..and so a few Americans have gone abroad to get it. First, to Mexico..and now to Germany, where it's available.
In our special tonight..Frank Field reports on what's happening to three Americans who went to Germany, hoping for help..
Jerry ??? ??? here at NBC.
Sandy ??? is a wife and mother.
Jean Hagen is a film and television actress.
What they all have in common in advanced cancer.
They came to ??? Germany two months ago to this cancer clinic run by Dr. Hans Nieper because they share the same fear..that they are about to die.
Dr. Nieper ??? them hope...and freedom from the cutting, poisoning and burning that are side effects of such conventional treatments as surgery, strong drugs and radiation.
The core of the Nieper regimen is laetrile, a mild ??? extracted from apricot pits. He claims that when laetrile is combined with a strict diet and a vaccine called BCG it builds that Patients' defenses. Dr. Nieper claims that laetrile works half the time. (sof Hans Nieper)
Dr. Nieper believes that at a minimum he can prolong the lives of Jerry Damon, Jean Hagen and Sandy Orgolini.
Sandy started having pains in the pelvic area last Sept. Since then, she's been operated on twice fro cancerous tumors that appeared on her ovaries. But the cancer has spread. (sof Sandy Orgolini)
Jean Hagon's doctor told her she had throat cancer. In the two years since, she's had surgery, drug the apy and radiation, but the tumors keep growing. (sof Jean Hagen)
Jerry Damon began to have chest pains last November. soon, a lump ??? near his breastbone. doctors at Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute in New York diagnosed the condition as cancer. They believe that without conventional therapy he is sure to die.
Jerry and his wife did not want to use surgery and strong drugs on his cancer. He's angry that the Food and Drug Administration limits his opportunity to obtain laetrile legally. Jerry feels he has a right to the kind of treatment he wants. (sof Jerry damon)
Before they left Germany, Jerry, Sandy and Jean each paid $1000 for a three month supply of laetrile and the rest of Dr. Nieper's program. Two months later, Jerry Damon continues to use laetrile, but the cancer has spread. He is now hospitalized and has decided to undergo radiation treatment.
Sandy Orgolini is combining laetrile with standard drug therapy. She's lost her hair, but says that otherwise, she feels fine. Jean Hagen is feeling weaker and is having trouble swallowing. She's a patient at the Motion Picture Hospital in Los Angeles. She and the others say they still have hope in laetrile. Frank Field NBC News
pre 1. ???, Germany (17-20)
1. Dr. Hans Nieper (1:11)
2. Sandy Orgolini (1:55)
3. Jean Hagen (2:32)
4. Jerry Damon (3:45)
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