Image by Michael Longmire

Studies find combination topical immunotherapy has a cure rate above 95%

When I started my practice in 2007, I looked for a low-cost alternative to skin cancer surgery. Dermatologists in Australia, Europe, and the UK were using Imiquimod 5% Cream, sometimes with 5-Fluorouracil, to treat basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma.

Adding Tretinoin 0.1% Cream to the combination, I created "The Shen Cocktail." Tretinoin 0.1% Cream peels the top layer of skin. Imiquimod 5% Cream and 2% 5-Fluorouracil signal an immune response to attack cancerous and precancerous skin cells.

I've used "The Shen Cocktail" on over 5,000 patients over a ten-year period. Researchers at University of Miami have concluded the cure rate for this combination topical immunotherapy is above 95%.

John T. Shen, M.D.


"A Non-Surgical and Cost-Effective Treatment Approach Employing Topical Imiquimod, 5-Fluorouracil, and Tretinoin for Primary Non-Melanoma Skin Cancers"

Journal of Drugs in Dermatology
March 2021

"Treating Melanoma in Situ During a Pandemic with Telemedicine and a Combination of Imiquimod, 5-Fluorouracil, and Tretinoin"

Dermatol Ther
January 17, 2021

"Treating keratinocyte carcinomas with a combination of imiquimod, 5-fluorouracil, and tretinoin using store-and-forward telemedicine in the age of coronavirus disease 2019 to promote social distancing"

Case Series, Volume 6, Issue 9, Pages 931-934
September 01, 2020
JAAD Case Reports

"Combination Topical Chemotherapy for the Treatment of an Invasive Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma"

Case report in February 2020, Volume 19, Issue 2 of Journal of Drugs in Dermatology

"Non-Invasive Treatment of Invasive Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head or Neck"

Poster presentation at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology


Shen Dermatology

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