A Cypriot doctor’s claim to have discovered a new and effective treatment for cancer has prompted a probe by the Cyprus medical board’s ethics committee, it emerged on Monday.
According to daily newspaper Politis, an August 28 post on Facebook page Natural & Herbal Therapies from the Researcher Dr Petais Elias in which he wrote “Dear friends, after seven years of efforts I am greatly pleased to announce that the cancer formula has finally been finished!” raised more than a few eyebrows.
Petais, a thoracic surgeon, might be facing disciplinary action if the medical board finds that his actions and words violated the profession’s ethics.
The rules stipulate that it would be unethical for doctors to “offer patients unnecessary or medically not advised services or drugs, with a view to exploiting them financially”.
In 2016, again on Facebook, Petais presented the ‘Advance’ formula to support cancer patients.
He claims to have research showing that the formula strengthens the immune system and attacks cancer cells only.
The formula, he says, contains 55ml herbal extracts, lycopene capsules, herbal powder, an injection of peptides, and a nutrition regimen.
“It is an option for those who want it, based on the results I have,” Petais said in a Facebook conversation.
“The rest doesn’t matter.”
The price for the treatment is €688, which Petais claims do not even cover the cost of preparing it.
According to Politis, Petais has been investigated by the ethics committee before, but was exonerated due to the negative exposure he was subjected to in the press.
A Greek webpage that debunks hoaxes concluded that Petais is a fraud.
“We will not speak of charlatanism, because we are well past this stage,” www.ellinikahoaxes.gr said.
“But we must look out for desperate people who may fall prey to swindlers.”
Petais told Politis his treatment is an old one that is making a comeback.
“It is helpful, we will see whether it helps or not in the years to come,” he said.
“Right now, we don’t know.”
Pressed to explain what it contains and how it might help, Petais said it is a supplementary treatment that “appears to help through the immune system”.
When it was pointed out to him that cancer is not a single disease but one that takes many forms, he replied “we give the same one for everything, it seems to help the entire system”.
“I started looking into physico-herbal formulas in 2004,” Petais said.
“My father was a cancer patient and chemotherapy was not working. He eventually died. At some point this research moved on.”
The doctor declined to share the formula’s ingredients, saying “that is the secret”.
“It works on its own, to some extent,” he said.
“But to be 100 per cent sure that it works there must be intensive research; but I’m alone.”