Mistletoe therapy in S3 guidelines for oncological patients

Recommendations for mistletoe therapy are currently included in the S3 guidelines for the treatment of lung cancer [248], gastric cancer [247], melanoma [116] and breast cancer [123].

The lung cancer guideline [248] states that no clear recommendations for mistletoe therapy are currently available for oncological practice. According to the guideline the results of clinical trials for this cancer entity would currently not be sufficient. 

According to the current gastric cancer guideline there is an "optional" recommendation for mistletoe therapy in patients with cancer of the stomach or the oesophagogastric junction with the aim of improving quality of life [247]. With regard to survival, according to the guideline, there are currently no adequate studies on mistletoe therapy available.

The guideline for the treatment of melanoma currently contains no information on mistletoe therapy with regard to quality of life [116]. It advises against adjuvant mistletoe therapy for prolongation of survival. It excludes mistletoe therapy for the palliative situation if immunological therapy is to be administered simultaneously.

Based on the data available, the breast cancer guideline of 2018 [123] assesses mistletoe therapy as "questionable" in terms of improving quality of life. With this assessment the guideline deviates from the German and international recommendations of the AGO, SIO und ASCO. In the current version it also states that mistletoe therapy does not prolong the survival of patients with breast cancer.  

The S3 Guideline for Complementary Medicine in the Treatment of Oncological Patients contains a guide to the use of mistletoe therapy in Chapter 7.17.11. This guideline is currently in the consultation phase. Further information can be found here.

Last update: July 9th, 2021
 

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