PPE/HFS - Chemotherapy Side Effect Part 1
Cancer is a common issue for many people and their families. Besides all of the well known side effects of the various treatment options, there is one that I had not heard of before, but is likely nothing new to many.
It goes by a few names: Palmar-Plantar Erythrodysesthesia (PPE) or Hand-Foot Syndrome (HFS). The direct mechanism by which people develop symptoms is unknown, but it's theorized that the cancer drugs leak from capillaries and due to the nature of the skin on the hands and feet, is able to damage the tissue there. I won't go into lots of details here because you can easily google the condition.
I want to discuss how I have planned and am currently working to develop a product to help people. I have been researching online and in journals for several weeks. The common treatments don't help much and you can become very sick. I am by no means a doctor (not even slightly), nor am I professing to have a miracle cure, but if I can make something or help others to make something to bring even a modicum of relief to people, then let's go on this journey together.
My first order of business was to look into herbs that have professed vasoconstriction action. As is the case with so much of the available herbal information, clinical evidence and research is scant. Instead, I have to go with people who have anecdotal evidence on this action. From information I can find, increasing blood flow to the area worsens the condition and so while herbs will by no means STOP blood flow to anywhere, vaso-constriction may help slightly.
So our first herb is Mentha Piperita (Peppermint). My plans are to infuse this into oil and extract some of the benefits that way. Peppermint provides cooling relief via the menthol within the oil. This is easily extracted into our future infused oil blend.
Keeping a completely oil based solution is my only option if we want to avoid using artificial ingredients, like parabens and other preservatives. My research has not come across any natural preservatives that are really effective and I won't take any risk in introducing infection to the lesions caused by PPE.
While not many people read this blog yet, I'd like to ask for feedback from you all. If you know people who suffer from this or suffer from it yourself, reach out to me. It goes without saying, that you do not have to share on this public space, so please send an email if you feel comfortable doing so. I'm open to all suggestions and anything that has worked for you.
Some things I'm pondering - a stick balm that is very soft so it will not pull on the delicate, injured skin tissue, a spray that can be applied gently and then patted, carefully into the effected areas. Or a liquid that can be applied to cheesecloth or other fabric and laid on top of the effected areas.
I think I've given you enough to read for now, I will post again in a few days.
I'm currently working to develop this, so if you have input, I'd love it now!
Please remember that I am NOT a doctor. I must place this disclaimer here because you should speak with your doctor(s) before using anything that I may discuss here or sell in my store.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.