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HARRY M. HOXSEY, N.D., 1920
Testing on the Hoxsey formula should be carried out. Surely, there must be some value here! It was used with apparent success on so many people.
Working Summary: The Hoxsey treatment consisted of nine herbs, plus potassium iodide. Fortunately, we know both theoriginal and the modified formulas. A Hoxsey clinic exists today in Mexico.
Of all the alternative cancer specialists, there was no one like Hoxsey, absolutely no one. He was a natural showman, and he loved a good fight.
The story began in 1840, when a valuable horse (a Percheron) on a farm in Illinois became ill. Harry Hoxsey’s great-grandfather was very concerned.
The veterinarian told him the animal had a hopeless cancer on its right hoof, and should be destroyed. Instead, John Hoxsey decided to turn it out into a large pasture so it could eat all the grass it wanted. He wanted the horse to die in peace. The pasture it was admitted to had lots of tall grass, plus lots of full-grown weeds of various kinds.
John watched his beloved horse,—and then noted that it went to one area of the pasture and ate certain weeds. Hoxsey became interested,walked over and watched this very closely. Soon the horse recovered completely and the tumor sloughed away.
So John ground up various combinations of the types of plants the horse had been eating, and began treating the farm animals. Eventually, from those weeds, he had an herbal remedy for cancer.With this in hand, he prepared a liquid, a salve, and a powder and began treating animals throughout the area. But he kept his formula a secret; and, before his death, Hoxsey entrusted the formula to his son, also named John, who became a “country doctor”—treating humans who had cancer. Whether he had it any degree is not known.
Of the twelve children in his family, only young Harry was interested in the cancer remedy. The father was thankful one of his sons wanted to carry on the healing work; so, in 1919 on his deathbed, he summoned Harry and ordered him to bring his safe deposit box and three tablets of writing paper.Requiring that the door be shut, he called Harry to come near and, sitting up in bed, John found a small white envelope. “These,” he declared,“are my cancer formulas.”
The father then commanded Harry to write out the formula for the liquid, the salve, and the powder over and over, till he had filled the three notebooks.In commenting on it later, he said he fell asleep in the room, before he finished, and had to finish the next morning.Then the father burned the papers and, soon after, died.
Harry Hoxsey was 18 years old, and planned to become a medical doctor before using the formulas.
But a Civil War veteran pled with him for help and, when he recovered, spread the news far and wide.Learning of his work, a clinic in Chicago invited him to give them a demonstration of his work.
Dr. Bruce Miller, a staff member, was astounded by what he saw, and agreed to become medical director of Hoxsey’s Cancer Clinic in Taylorville,Illinois.
Miller remained with Hoxsey through some of his most difficult times, and later moved to Los Angeles and continued treating cancer with the technique.At some point in his life, Hoxsey acquired a naturopathic degree.
The war began when Hoxsey was invited to give a demonstration of his method in Chicago,under the sponsorship of Dr. Malcolm Harris, a well-known surgeon. Harris was secretary of the AMA, at the time, and later its president.The most hopeless patient that could be found was brought to Hoxsey. Thomas Mannix, a police sergeant, had rotting flesh in his clavicle where the cancer was. Looking at him, Miller despaired and said nothing could be done for the man.
Hoxsey was utterly confident of success.Good results were immediately seen; but, of course, a continued course of treatments would need to be given before there could be full recovery.
The next morning Hoxsey was summoned to Harris’ office and told that he and his associates wanted to use it, so everybody in America could be healed. Hoxsey was thrilled, but was then told that careful tests would have to be made and that,first, Hoxsey would have to sign a 10-page legal contract which required Hoxsey to sign over all rights to the formula to Harris and his associates.
He had to give them the formula, hand over all herbal mixtures on hand, and close his clinic and never practice again Shocked, Hoxsey feebly asked to see an attorney first, but Harris said absolutely No. In addition,he said that Hoxsey could not see Sergeant Mannix again unless he signed the paper. Orders to that effect were immediately phoned to the hospital.
Harry Hoxsey was powerfully built; and it is at this juncture that his incredible capacity for boldnessin the face of opposition revealed itself.
Frankly, all he had to do was to politely excuse himself, step out of the office, and a few minutes later phone Mannix’s daughter. But Hoxsey was a great believer in confrontation.
As he later wrote in his 1956 book, You Don’t Have to Die, Hoxsey described what happened next:
“I waited until he hung up the receiver, then seized the telephone and called the Mannix home. Before I could be connected, Doctor Harris reached over the desk and tried to take the telephone away from me. My left elbow flipped up, caught him squarely in the chest, and set him flying into his chair. It promptly topped him over, depositing him in a most undignified position on the floor.”
Hoxsey then told Mannix’s daughter to take her father out of the hospital immediately, and that he would be over to change his dressings shortly at his home.At this, Harris jumped up and shrieked that he would have Hoxsey jailed if he treated Mannix again. “I will run you quack out of Illinois!” he screamed.
The war had begun, but Hoxsey reveled in the battle.It would require too much space to detail the skirmishes, but a few highlights can be noted. After enemies closed him down in Illinois, he moved to Detroit, then to West Virginia, Iowa, and finally, in 1936, to Dallas, Texas.
In Dallas, Hoxsey was able to win powerful friends among local political and business interests.But the lawsuits, injunctions, arrests, and occasional jailings continued.He won libel suits against Morris Fishbein and the Hearst newspapers. He also sometimes won medical suits. Fishbein, editor of the Journal of the AMA, wrote this about Hoxsey:“All the other wicked medical fakes, firing hope and darkening it to despair, pale beside the savagery of the cancer charlatans. They look like men, they speak like men, but in them, pervading them, resides a quality so malevolent that it sets them apart from others of the human race . .
“They slay their patients as guiltily as if they knifed them in the heart, and they stay within the letter of the law . .”—Morris Fishbein, American Eagle, quoted in Harry Hoxsey, You Don’t Have to Die.
Hoxsey was not a man to cringe when in a fight.He replied:
“The distinguished author [Fishbein] had inherited from his spiritual father the technique of the big lie: ‘Make up a lie that’s big enough,repeat it often enough and people will believe it!’ Adolf Hitler was dead, but the Hitler of American medicine ranted on.”—H.M. Hoxsey, You Don’t Have to Die.
In the suit against Fishbein, representing the American Medical Association, Fishbein had to admit that he had never practiced medicine one day in his life; had never had a private patient; had no contact with Hoxsey’s method, patients, or records;and thus really knew nothing about what he was talking about.
In 1954, Hoxsey opened a clinic in Portage,Pennsylvania, with the help of John Haluska, a former state senator. Over the years, some of the rich and powerful people that Hoxsey helped,—helped him in return.
In later years, Dr. Andrew C. Ivy (of Krebiozen fame) briefly visited the Hoxsey Clinic and expressed his opinion that it was the potassium in the formula that was the key ingredient.It is an intriguing fact that most of the effective alternative cancer remedies include potassium.
Repeatedly, the medical interests refused to examine“cured” patients, look over their medical records, or conduct tests with full disclosure of results.At his zenith in the U.S., Hoxsey had thousands of happy cancer patients coming to his 17 clinics.But, after repeated arrests, by the late 1950s,Hoxsey had been forced to leave his clinics, which he had turned over to others. The last to close were the ones in Dallas, California, and Pennsylvania.They are closed today.
In the late 1950s, Hoxsey moved to Mexico and practiced for a time. He was in his 50s by then.
Hoxsey Therapy—Bio-Medical Center, P.O. Box 727, 615 General Ferreira, Colonia Juarez Tijuana, Mexico 22000Ph: 011 52 66-84-9011 / 011 52 66-84-9081 / 011 52 66-84-9082 / 011 52 66-84-9376
SUPPLEMENT: THE HOXSEY FORMULA
Harry Hoxsey’s formula included Red clover,Burdock root, Barberry bark, Licorice root,Buckthorn bark, Prickly ash, poke berries and root, Stillingia root, Cascara amarga, Potassium iodide, zinc chloride, and antimony trisulfide.
Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) had been used by the Lake Superior Indians to treat cancer.Physicians, using bloodroot paste in the 1960s,healed cancers of the nose, external ear, and other organs (Cancer Chronicles, August 1990). Buckthorn contains aloe-emodin, which tests reveal has anti-cancer properties. Cascara also has aloe-emodin.
Barberry has anti-tumor effects. The OTA report,within the last ten years (see “Alternative Remedies and Congress,” at the front of this book),noted that components of prickly ash (chelerythrine and nitidine) and of stillingia (gnidilatidin) have shown positive anti-tumor activity in test animals.
The major component of the internal tonic was potassium iodide. The actual proportions and methods of extractions were kept secret (Harry Hoxsey, You Don’t Have to Die, 1956).
Patients taking the tonics were cautioned to avoid tomatoes, alcohol, processed flour, and vinegar, because of their ability to negate the tonic’s effect. The Hoxsey formula was most successful against lymphoma, melanoma, and skin cancer.
In 1968, the Hoxsey method was placed on the ACS Unproven Methods List. Today, Hoxsey’s work is carried on at the Hoxsey Clinic in Tijuana,Mexico, which estimates that 80% of the patients are significantly helped.
In 1963, Mildred Nelson, Hoxsey’s chief nurse,opened the Bio-Medical Center in Tijuana, Mexico,which still offers the Hoxsey treatment. Here is the formula used by Nelson at her clinic:
Red clover (Trifolium pratense)Burdock root (Arctium lappa)Barberry bark (Berberis vulgaris)Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra)Buckthorn bark (Rhamnus purshiana)Prickly ash (Zanthoxylum americanium)Chaparral (Larrea tridentata)Stillingia root (Stillingia sylvatica)Cascara amarga (Picramnia antidesma)Potassium iodide
Nelson substituted chaparral for poke, which was in the original formula. We do not know whether she still includes zinc chloride and antimony trisulfide in her revised formula. We also do not know the proportions of each ingredient in the total formula. (It is well to note that it is now known that pau d’arco contains the same cancer fighting chemical found in chaparral, KDGA, yet does not have the side effects which sometimes occurs with chaparral. See the sections on chaparral and pau d’arco for more on this.)
Medical literature reveals that licorice root has produced adverse effects when taken in massive doses. Poke can be toxic also, but is not included in the current formula.
The Hoxsey Clinic recommends taking 1 or 2 teaspoonfuls of the powdered formula in a glass of hot or cold water two or more times a day. The external treatments, which Hoxsey used to use,have been discontinued because they were so harsh and painful