We are writing this
on behalf of Premanand who is seriously ill and has undergone an operation for
cancer of the stomach. In his absence and as requested by him, we will be trying
to perform the difficult task of editing the Indian Skeptic. It is a very
tough job to maintain the standards set up by him. He has had the advantages of
many decades of experience in the field of investigation of paranormal
phenomena. We do hope that R.J.Rao (Somu) and I will be equal to the task. Two
of us shall perform this until he is fit to take up the responsibilities again.
It may take months together.
Premanand had been
suffering from hyperacidity loss of appetite, vomiting and a sense of fullness
from quite some time. When he visited Mangalore in connection with publication
of a collection of my articles we had forced him to undergo a medical checkup
which revealed a large tumour of the stomach. He was subsequently taken to
Bangalore where he was operated upon by Dr. Vijaykumar, an eminent oncological
surgeon. The tumour has been diagnosed as a malignant one. It is at his
behest that a little write up about cancer and its cure is being included in
May be fifty years
ago, cancers were totally incurable. At the best there could be a surgical
excision of the affected part and the rest would be left to the patients immune
system! Of course the religious ones could say- rest would in the hands of god!
We Rationalists who certainly do not believe in one have to rely on our own
bodily mechanisms and advances in science in battle disease processes. It
is said that surgery in most of the cases of cancer is only a palliative measure
in Premanandís case it is so and also a sort of biopsy because the specimen got
during gastroscopy showed only normal tissues!
understanding of the mechanisms of carcinogenesis and advances in treatment it
is possible to have total cures since some and in many improve the quality and
duration of life. Since cancers are the abnormal multiplication of the
bodies own cells, it can possibly happen to any cell. However, it is more
common in those exposed to carcinogens i.e cancer producing molecules.
So it's incidence is
more common among cells lining the respiratory, gastrointestinal, genitourinary
tracts and the skin. Due to the abnormal multiplication of these cells,
growths result at a very rapid pace. This results in abnormal growth of
those and starvation for the other cells. It also results in rapid
breakdown of body proteins, loss of weight and consequences thereof.
The line of treatment
for cancers is to destroy the malignant cells, prevent their multiplication and
at the same time cause minimum damage to the healthy cells. This is not
very easy. A line of treatment including chemotherapy, surgery and
radiotherapy is used. Premanand has been already operated upon and the
next plan of action will be decided upon by the experts who are treating him.
In the meanwhile
we all join in wishing him a speedy recovery and many more years of active work
in the field.
Prof. Narendra Nayak and R.G.Rao (Somu)