Oatmeal Lotion for Chemotherapy-Induced Rash

Oatmeal Lotion for Chemotherapy-Induced Rash  on Breast Cancer Authority BlogOatmeal has been used for centuries as a topical soothing agent on the skin to relieve itch and irritation in dermatology. Of course this is coming from Johnson & Johnson, that sells a brand of oatmeal lotion, but look, if it helps with dry skin or a bug bite, I can imagine it having some soothing quality, but this study shocked me.

There’s a class of chemo drugs, like Cetuximab, that causes an awful rash. It’s bad enough you have some horrible cancer, but then to have a painful itchy rash on top of it? Various treatments have been tried and failed. There was no clear preventive or curative treatment for this eruption. Or is there…

The researchers had heard about this study, in which human skin fragments from plastic surgery were subjected to an inflammatory chemical, and adding an oatmeal extract appeared to help, so what do you have to lose? Of the ten patients with chemo rashes who they were able to get access to try some oatmeal lotion, six had a complete response, and four a partial response, giving an overall oatmeal response rate of 100%.

Doctors wrote in from around the world. Significant improvement in all patients? Seemed rather too good to be true, but out of desperation they tried it, and got the same astonishing results. Oatmeal; a simple topical agent producing such spectacular benefit where more complex therapies have failed. In an age when ever more expensive treatments are consistently being championed, it would be a great pity if this inexpensive, natural approach to relieving distressing symptoms were to be overlooked.

Ironically, two of the cancer cell lines found resistant in vitro to this type of chemotherapy were found to be sensitive to avenanthramides, which are unique phytonutrients found in oats, suggesting that people should be applying oatmeal to their insides as well.

Doctor’s Note

Normally I wouldn’t make a whole video for such a rare use, but I was so impressed with the results I figured that even if I could help one person in this situation it would be worth it. Reminds me of my videos Treating Gorlin Syndrome With Green Tea and Topical Application of Turmeric Curcumin for Cancer.

If oatmeal is so powerful that it can clear up some of the ravages of chemotherapy just applied to the skin, what might it do if we actually ate it? That’s the subject of my next video, Can Oatmeal Help Fatty Liver Disease?

Cetuximab is often given for metastatic colorectal cancer. Better to try to prevent the disease in the first place:

Michael Greger M.D.About Michael Greger M.D.Michael Greger, M.D., is a physician, author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous “meat defamation” trial. Currently Dr. Greger proudly serves as the Director of Public Health and Animal Agriculture at the Humane Society of the United States.

Featured Photo From http://www.WiseGeek.org

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  1. Heather Berner says:

    My mom is on an experimental drug for chemotherapy. She has stage 4 breast cancer. It is causing a horrible rash that even the rash medicine will not work. Any ideas? Will oatmeal work? It looks like a burn and is constantly oozing. She may want to quit this chemo if this doesn’t stop or lessen, but it’s her last resort.


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