Which clinical trials are open to me?
At the Mercyhealth Cancer Centers, we offer Phase III trials in the most common cancer types: Lung, breast, colon, and prostate. We also have several Phase II trials open at any one time. Our patients have recently participated in trials that led to the FDA approval of several new cancer treatments.
At the Mercyhealth Cancer Centers, a number of clinical trials are always in progress. If you’d like more information about your suitability as a clinical trial participant, talk to your doctor, or call (608) 756-6871 or toll-free (800) 928-1103.
What are clinical trials?
Cancer clinical trials test new treatments for people with cancer. A clinical trial is one of the last stages in a long research process. Usually, a new treatment begins with basic research in laboratory and animal studies. The best results of that research are then tested in people to determine if the new treatment is safe and effective.
Why are clinical trials important?
Almost all medications available today have been tested in a clinical trial. The trials help to determine new and better treatments.
What are the phases of clinical trials?
Phase I trials are the first step in testing a new treatment in humans to determine safety and identify side effects.
Phase II trials focus on trying to determine the effectiveness of a treatment for a particular condition.
Phase III trials test whether a new treatment is more effective than the standard treatment. Patients are randomly assigned to either the new treatment or the standard treatment.
Phase IV trials evaluate the long-term safety, side effects, risks, and benefits of treatments already approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Benefits of participating in a clinical trial
- Participants receive high-quality cancer care and close observation by the research team.
- Patients have access to new treatments otherwise not available.
- New treatment may be more effective than standard treatment.
- Patients can help others and improve cancer treatment.
- Patients may have access to study medication at no cost.
Risks of participation
- New treatment may not be better than standard treatment.
- New treatment may have side effects or risks that are unknown or worse than the standard treatment.
- Participants in randomized trials do not have a choice of treatment.
- Health insurance may not cover all costs.
- Participants may have to undergo more tests or procedures than is done with standard care.
Rights and protections of study participants
- The decision to participate is voluntary.
- A patient can stop study therapy at any time.
- Confidentiality is protected.
- Informed consent is obtained before enrolling in a study.
- The institutional review board (IRB), a group of medical and non-medical professionals, approves, and monitors each study.