Here We Go Again. Credulous Media Enabling Another Cancer Disaster.

A story appeared in the Sunshine Coast Daily on the 14th April 2016 with the headline:   

“Cowgirl chooses alternative therapies to treat cancer.”

Carissa Gleeson is a 22 year old woman from Western Australia who was diagnosed with a synovial sarcoma in 2015. She has spent much of her time working on cattle stations and has a love of the land. Now she is channeling that passion into beating her cancer. 

What an awful shame that she appears to be seriously misguided. 

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Carissa Gleeson

Just like Jess AinscoughCarissa was offered conventional treatment but has refused in favour of putting her faith in a cancer quack/ entrepreneur. Jess chose Gerson “Therapy”, while Carissa is following the lead of  Ty Bollinger and his documentary that includes the usual suspects including Mike Adams, Stanislaw Burzynski  and Joseph Mercola, just to name a few. Carissa’s cancer is a slow progressing one with similarities to the cancer that Jess had, so it will appear for some time that her “treatments” are working, until it becomes clear that they aren’t.

Her “treatment” regime which sounds all too familiar to those well versed in cancer quackery involves:

  • A change in diet
  • Cutting out all processed sugar  and other processed foods from her diet.
  • Only eating organic foods, including fresh vegetables grown in her own garden.
  • A program of supplements.
  • Drinking lots of alkaline water.
  • Cleansing / juice and water fasting.
  • Emotional healing.
  • Colonics.
  • Hyperbaric chamber.
  • Ozone therapy.
  • UV blood cleaning.
  • Bi carb.
  • PolyMVA.
  • Glutathione.
  • High dose intravenous Vitamin C.
  • Using an infrared sauna every day, “just to help flush things out of the body, and to move out the toxins.”

The first two things on that list would benefit the health of just about anyone. They won’t cure cancer though, not even when combined with the rest of the quackery on the list.

Also like in the case of Jess Ainscough, this pursuit of unproven quackery is putting a financial burden on the family. At the time of writing, Carissa’s gofundme fundraising page has received $13,320 of a $60,000 goal. Goodness knows how much she has spent so far, and how much she will need in the future to continue this nonsense. $60,000 is nothing to be sneezed at though, and it seems that is just a proportion of the costs of her  “treatments”. Quacks and alternative ~to~ medicine proponents tell us that cancer is big business. It sure is for some, certainly not for those they aim those comments at, but rather closer to home. 

Finally, and again, just like Jess Ainscough, if Carissa insists on following this path, she will succumb to the cancer and the quacks who encouraged her down the path of useless treatment while profiting off her will be nowhere to be seen. If we do hear from them it will be to place the blame of her death clearly at her own feet for not doing their treatments right, or not having the right, or positive enough attitude. Along with them not working, the other predictable outcome with alternative cancer “treatments”, is that when they don’t work,the patient is blamed.

It is as unethical as it is offensive. 

It remains to be seen whether the Australian media will fail this girl and the public by telling her story in the same way that it told the story of Jess Ainscough. Her story was told as one of a girl who miraculously cured her cancer, while she was slowly dying from an indolent cancer that was taking its expected course. The Sunshine Coast Daily is off to a bad start. I hope that they, and other media see the error of their ways on stories like these and report on them responsibly. 

6 thoughts on “Here We Go Again. Credulous Media Enabling Another Cancer Disaster.

  1. The media will continue to promote this quackery and woo until people are sick of hearing these lies and want to see and hear true reporting. Right now, people seem to love to be entertained by these amazing ‘miracle’ cures.In the US, Oprah and even CNN, Newsweek etc have shilled for these quacks. With tragic results to people who are really sick, gullible and desperate. A similar story is of Lisa Melman , who Oprah used on her TV show to promote quack faith healer john of god of Brazil. Lisa had breast cancer and chose this quack’s ‘psychic surgery’ which entailed a stage show of sticking a pair of forceps up her nose( I kid you not!) and refused medical treatment. Her cancer grew and became worse till she got sick and soon died. Of course no follow- up from US news shows and Oprah about this tragedy.

  2. I find it interesting that it’s always women who are showcased by the media for doing this. Like it’s better to let yourself die than to “lose your looks” from chemo and surgery. As always, they’re really valuing women’s lives. /s

    In even more depressing news, it appears that Lucie d’Alessandro (, friend of Jess Ainscough) has passed from her cancer. Another victim of Gerson Therapy.

    • Hi, I was also interested to read of Lucie’s death. The sad part is that she was diagnosed with breast cancer, which is often curable with conventional treatment. A few months ago a friend of hers started a crowd sourcing fundraiser, saying that her treatment was costing $4000 a month. God only knows what that was for, since Medicare would cover conventional treatment.

  3. Hi Rosalie.

    I re-discovered your blog and noted some new posts. I read Carissa’s story on Orac’s blog and I thought of Jess Ainscough all over again. I also learnt of Lucie D’Alessandro’s passing and was so saddened by this.

    I was hoping that she had stopped posting because she was in a new relationship and her health had improved. That was not to be… So many new targeted treatments are coming into play with BC too and these are game changers….. so so sad

    Hopefully Carissa will not wait until its too late but as I have learnt, there is nothing anyone can say or do when they are given so much false hope by the snake oil peddlers that give certainties whilst toxic Big Pharma conventional treatment only gives probabilities.

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