Medication for Cancer-Related Fatigue

Marion Debus

Last update: 04.02.2020

  • Mistletoe therapy (1, 2) is the main treatment for all stages of cancer-related fatigue, especially to accompany other treatments.
    See also:  

  • Especially for chronic cancer fatigue, when cognitive fatigue predominates: 
    Helleborus niger D6, D3 amp. HELIXOR, WALA: 1 amp. s.c. 2–3x/week , alternating with mistletoe therapy

  • For circulatory stabilization, as well as for the general stabilization of rhythmic processes, including a favorable influence on the day/night rhythm: 
    Cardiodoron® dil. WELEDA, 10–15 drops 2–3x/d or 1 tab. 3x/d

  • If there is a tendency to hypotension and fatigue: 
    Skorodit circulatory system liquid dilution for injection, or pillules WALA (also available as Skorodit Kreislauf Injekt or Globuli velati), 1 amp. s.c. 1x/d to 3x/weekly, or 10 pill. 2–3x/d

  • To strengthen the patient’s life forces, lighten their mood: 
    Levico comp. liquid dilution for injection WALA, 1 amp. s.c. 1x/d to 3x/weekly, or orally, as needed.

  • To strengthen the patient’s etheric forces in parallel with radiation therapy: 
    Thuja occidentalis Argento culta Rh dil. WELEDA, 10 drops 2–3x/d (up to 4 weeks after radiation therapy)

  • To stimulate the metabolism and improve sleeping through the night: 
    Hepatodoron® tab. WELEDA, 2–3 tabs. before bed

  • Bitter substances for cachexia and nutritional disorders, e.g.: 
    Amara drops WELEDA, 20 drops 10 min. before meals
    or Bitter Elixir WALA, 5 ml 10 min. before meals
    However, using bitter agents to stimulate the appetite only works for some patients.

  • For sleep disorders: 
    Bryophyllum 50% trit. WELEDA, 2 saltspoons (~½ tsp.) before bed (3)

  • For difficulty sleeping through: 
    Bryophyllum Argento cultum Rh D3 dil. WELEDA, 20 drops before bed (3)

The composition of the German medicinal products mentioned: Cardiodoron®: fresh primrose flowers (25 mg), fresh henbane (1 mg), fresh donkey thistle flowers (25 mg). Levico comp. amp.: Hypericum perforatum ex herba ferm 33c dil. D2 0.1 g; Strong Levico water (Levico “Stark”-Wasser) dil. D2 aquos. 0.1 g; Prunus spinosa e floribus et summitatibus ferm cum Ferro dil. D3 0.1 g. Hepatodoron®: dried wild strawberry leaves 40 mg, dried grapevine leaves 40 mg. Amara drops: Fresh wormwood (5 mg), fresh centaury (2.5 mg), chicory, whole fresh plant (20 mg), fresh gentian root (15 mg), fresh masterwort rootstock (5 mg), dried juniper shoots (0.5 mg), dried yarrow (20 mg), dried sage leaves (10 mg), dandelion, whole fresh plant (20 mg). Bitter elixir: Liquid extract (10.7 g), ex Gentian root fluid extract; et Wormwood leaves fluid extract; et Ginger root fluid extract; et Calmus rootstock fluid extract; et Black pepper fluid extract


  1. Vademecum Anthroposophische Arzneimittel. Vol. 2. Grundlagen und Anwendung der Misteltherapie in der Onkologie. 4th ed. supplement to Der Merkurstab. Munich: Gesellschaft Anthroposophischer Ärzte in Deutschland e.V.; 2017. English translation: Vademecum of anthroposophic medicines. Best practices for mistletoe use in cancer care. 1st English ed. Munich: Association of Anthroposophic Physicians in Germany; 2019.
  2. See also this mistletoe website
  3. Simões-Wüst AP, Kuck A, von Mandach U. Sedierende und antihistaminische Wirkungen von Bryophyllum pinnatum: Implikationen für die Behandlung von Schlafstörungen und Allergien. Der Merkurstab 2017;70(1):44–47.

Research news

Mistletoe therapy in addition to standard immunotherapy in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer indicates improved survival rates 
Immunotherapy with PD-1/PD-L1 inhibitors has significantly improved the survival rates of patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Results of a real-world data study (RWD) investigating the addition of Viscum album L. (VA) to chemotherapy have shown an association with improved survival in patients with NSCLC - regardless of age, degree of metastasis, performance status, lifestyle or oncological treatment. The mechanisms may include synergistic modulations of the immune response by PD-1/PD-L1 inhibitors and VA. However, the results should be taken with caution due to the observational and non-randomised study design. The study has been published open access in Cancers

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