Clinical trials often provide cutting-edge treatment for patients with advanced cancer after standard treatment options have failed. With information about which clinical trials are currently enrolling patients, physicians can guide such patients to new possibilities for treatment.
With one of the world’s largest clinical trials programs, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has about 1,000 clinical trials open at any given time. Some of these are trials of experimental agents or new techniques of radiation or surgery, while others test new combinations of existing treatments or test an agent approved for one type of cancer in a different type. In addition to trials of new cancer treatments, MD Anderson offers trials of new technologies or techniques for cancer prevention, diagnosis, and survivorship.
Physicians and patients can search MD Anderson’s online database of clinical trials by cancer type, treatment type, principal investigator, or National Institutes of Health identification number (NCT No.). The Web site has drop-down menus to facilitate searches and a search tool that allows users to find trials using specific terms (e.g., HER2-negative metastatic inflammatory breast cancer).
For patients, the clinical trials Web site offers links to pages that give general information about clinical trials and explain the differences between phase I, II, III, and IV trials. This information can help patients make informed decisions about whether to participate in a trial.
For physicians, the Web site tells how to contact MD Anderson research staff for specific information about particular trials.
The clinical trials database and links to patient information are available at www.clinicaltrials.org. The physician information is available at www.mdanderson.org/for-physicians/clinical-trials.html.
OncoLog, March 2016, Volume 61, Issue 3