Cancer patients are encouraged to ask the medical team if there is a clinical trial available that they qualify for

Cancer patients are encouraged to ask their medical team if there is a clinical trial that might be right for them.

It comes ahead of International Clinical Trials Day on Friday 20th May when Cancer Trials Ireland will host a free clinical trials webinar for the public.

The virtual event to promote public understanding of clinical trials is part of the Just Ask campaign. This initiative encourages patients to check with their doctors if there is a clinical trial that is right for them.

The webinar will include a presentation from clinical trials expert Professor Seamus O’Reilly, Consultant Medical Oncologist and Associate Clinical Director of Cancer Trials Ireland, on how trials work and how to access them, while previous trial participants will share their experiences on what to do is expect of.

The event will take place on May 20 from 2pm to 3pm and will be streamed live online.

Prof Ray McDermott, Consultant Medical Oncologist and Clinical Director of Cancer Trials Ireland said: “Cancer trials are looking for new ways to prevent, find and better treat cancer. They can provide early access to medicines that are not otherwise available. You can help improve the quality of life for people living with cancer.

“You can save lives. With our Just Ask campaign, we encourage patients to ask their medical team if there is a clinical trial that might be suitable or relevant for them.”

He said patients should have peace of mind knowing that by participating in a study, they’ll receive even more care than before.

“They will see their team more often to check on their progress and well-being.

“Even after the study is over, patients often continue to be monitored, sometimes for several years, which is very reassuring.

“Indeed, research has shown that the increased level of care provided to clinical trial patients can in itself contribute to better outcomes. So there is every reason to consider a clinical trial. She’s really going to help us find answers to stroke and cancer.”

The top five myths about clinical trials are:

• The placebo myth. There is no cancer clinical trial for a new therapy that leaves patients untreated. The “placebo” portion of a cancer study ensures that the patient is receiving the best cancer treatment available, known as the “standard of care,” against which the study treatment is compared.

• The “I’ll be locked up” myth. Information sharing is an important part of the recruitment process in any clinical trial, with medical teams providing patients with comprehensive literature and answering their questions as best they can. But even after signing up, you are not “locked in” for the duration of the trial. You can unsubscribe at any time.

• The “I don’t have the money” myth. Cancer studies are not for those with deep wallets. Subject to relevant exclusions based on medical history, you can apply if there is a clinical study taking place here that is enrolling new participants. There are no costs for treatments or tests. For a full list of clinical trials taking place in Ireland today go to

• The “guinea pig” myth. In Ireland, no new cancer drugs are tested in humans for the first time or in so-called ‘first-in-human’ trials. Rather, the open cancer studies here are very often “phase 3” studies that are at a more advanced stage of therapy development.

These trials involve well-known drugs that are now being administered in a new way or dosage, or in combination with another therapy. Additionally, any study opening in Ireland must first be approved by the regulator and a national research ethics committee to ensure it meets the highest legal and scientific standards.

• The question “Who will take care of me?” Myth. Aside from clinical trial treatment, participants will likely need to visit the hospital more frequently for blood work, scans, and other tests.

Response to study therapy will be closely monitored both during and after the study by experienced cancer counselors and the nursing support team. Cancer patients are encouraged to ask the medical team if there is a clinical trial available that they qualify for

Fry Electronics Team

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