Mistletoe is a semiparasitic plant that grows on several types of common trees such as apple, oak, pine, and elm. Mistletoe extract has been used since ancient times to treat many ailments (see Question 1).
Mistletoe is one of the most widely studied complementary and alternative medicine therapies in people with cancer. In certain European countries, preparations made from European mistletoe are among the most prescribed drugs for patients with cancer (see Question 1).
Added text about a randomized controlled trial of screening versus usual care in Kerala, India; during a 15-year follow-up period, there were 138 deaths from oral cancer in the screening group with a cause–specific mortality rate of 15.4 per 100,000 person-years, and 154 deaths in the control group with at mortality rate of 17.1 per 100,000 person-years (cited Sankaranarayanan et al. as reference 19).
Revised text to state that aside from the issues of generalizability to other populations and lack of an overall statistically significant result in cause–specific mortality, interpretation of the results is made difficult by serious lacks in methodologic detail about the randomization process, allocation concealment, adjustment for clustering effect, and information about treatment.
This summary is written and maintained by the PDQ Screening and Prevention Editorial Board, which is editorially independent of NCI. The summary reflects an independent review of the literature and does not represent a policy statement of NCI or NIH. More information about summary policies and the role of the PDQ Editorial Boards in maintaining the PDQ summaries can be found on the About This PDQ Summary and PDQ NCI's Comprehensive Cancer Database pages.
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September 04, 2014
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