Clinical Trial Information from Ancora.ai for Chris’s Cancer Community
Chris’s Cancer Community partners with Ancora.ai because they help people affected by cancer learn more about clinical trials. Trials can be a daunting topic for doctors to figure out, let alone patients, who often start the process on their own without much support. We created this brief guide to help you find out about clinical trial basics and to provide some guidance on what to do if you want to look into what trial options you might have – this is something we feel could benefit every cancer patient. Knowledge empowers us to make better decisions and advocate for ourselves!
First of all, what are clinical trials?
A clinical trial is a research study of a new medication, intervention or device to ensure it is safe and effective. Clinical trials aim to determine if a new treatment is more effective and/or less harmful than the standard treatment. Data from clinical trials is used to decide whether treatments are approved for use outside of research settings. Clinical trials take place in four different phases, which you can learn more about here). All cancer treatments available today have been studied and approved via clinical trials.
What are the pros and cons of participating in cancer clinical trials?
Pros of clinical trials may include:
- You could be one of the first people to gain access to new drugs or therapy types
- Your care will include close monitoring by the clinical trial health team
- Your participation could benefit other cancer patients
Cons of clinical trials may include:
- The treatment may not be effective or may be inferior to the standard treatment
- You could have an adverse reaction or unpleasant side effects
- Participating in a clinical trial could include having to travel for treatment, attend more appointments, or other potential inconveniences
How do I find out what clinical trial options might be right for me?
As a first step, you can check out Ancora.ai, a tool that allows patients and caregivers to look for relevant clinical trials in an easily searchable, personally tailored way (it’s free!). Ancora.ai also provides resources to learn more about clinical trials and treatments.
Once you have a short list of personally relevant trials, we recommend discussing the list with your physician and loved ones. If you find your list of potential trials is quite long, make sure you’ve filled in the questionnaire section to narrow down to the specific trials that meet your personal criteria.
The trial landscape changes all the time, so do not worry if you do not find a suitable trial right away. You can sign up for automatic alerts to get updates about new trials that may be a good fit for you in the future without having to search again. You can also update your profile over time to see if your list of trials changes if you have new information, such as genetic test results.
If you decide you would like to join a trial, you can click the “put me in contact” button on the trial information page and the team will start the process towards enrolment for you. We are also always happy to help answer any of your questions along the way, just get in touch (firstname.lastname@example.org).