What are clinical trials, and should you participate in them? Patient Power’s host Andrew Schorr entered a clinical trial in 1996 for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). He has now been in remission for many years, and doctors now use the methods tested on him to treat others. Joining Andrew for this program are Dr. Marc Stuart from the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and his patient, Roger. You’ll learn how clinical trials can lengthen and strengthen your life.
Roger has sarcoma, a rare form in which there are only 150 to 200 cases diagnosed each year. He worked with his team of doctors at the Seattle Care Alliance and they helped him decide which clinical trials to participate in. He has been in three trials, including surgery and medicines. Because there is no magic bullet for Roger’s sarcoma, he went to the University of Washington Medical Center to shrink the tumor for surgery. All of Roger’s trials were covered by health insurance, and Roger suggests contacting the insurance company to find out if one you’re interested is.
Dr. Marc Stuart discusses the importance of clinical trials for the advancement of medicine. He explains the ethics of the trials and the protocols put in place to ensure they are safe. For those who don’t have access to a network of doctors offering clinical trials, or for people like Roger who have rare disorders that don’t offer many trials, there are now many resources on the internet including Clinicaltrials.gov. Trials are available to all kinds of groups, included the elderly, and patients can drop out of clinical trial any time they choose.
In this very informative program, Andrew explains the importance of being proactive as a patient. He advocates that patients play a role in initiating a discussion about experimental drugs for your illness that your doctor may not even be aware of. If your looking for hope, this program is sure to inspire you.
F. Marc Stewart, M.D.
Medical Director, Seattle Cancer Care AllianceDr. Stewart serves as Medical Director for Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and Professor of Medical Oncology at the University of Washington Medical School. His expertise includes stem cell transplantation and treatment of head and neck cancers, genitourinary cancer and blood disorders. Dr. Stewart received his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine, completed residency training at Indiana University... more >
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