This is an interesting report from MedScape about the value of vitamin supplements for cancer patients/survivors. There is a long history of discussion around this topic, and there have been varying points of view expressed through the years. Please note that, like anything else that involves ingesting something, it is smart to ask your doctor about any vitamins that you plan to take. Generally, doctors feel that only regular multi-vitamins are acceptable during active treatment. Once chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy have been completed, there are likely fewer worries about what you take.
Here is the introduction and then a link:
From Medscape Education Clinical Briefs Vitamin Supplements Beneficial in Patients With Breast Cancer CME
News Author: Roxanne Nelson CME Author: Laurie Barclay, MD
CME Released: 01/03/2011; Valid for credit through 01/03/2012
January 3, 2011 — The evidence continues to be unclear as to whether dietary supplements are helpful or harmful during cancer treatment. Many clinicians recommend that vitamin supplements — and in particular, high doses of antioxidants — not be used while therapy is ongoing because of concerns that they might reduce the efficacy of radiation and chemotherapy.
However, a new study finds no evidence that the use of vitamins during first 6 months after a diagnosis of breast cancer adversely affected outcomes. In fact, it found quite the opposite: vitamin use appeared to have a beneficial effect among patients with breast cancer who underwent chemotherapy.
Vitamin use — and the use of vitamins C and E in particular — appeared to be associated with reduced risk for mortality and recurrence.
The study was published online December 21, 2010, in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.