Once seen as a last chance attempt for cancer patients to turn back the progression of their disease, clinical trials are becoming many sufferers initial treatment option. Clinical trials are research studies that involve humans to aid and assist doctors and researchers in developing new techniques to prevent, treat, diagnose and manage side effects for cancer patients. Trial participants receive either the standard of care or the new medication or procedure that is under study. As a participant, patients receive the latest drugs protocols and treatment procedures available to discover ways to improve the quality of life for those afflicted with the disease. While the dynamics of clinical trials pose some additional risk when compared with long used methods, clinical trials can offer an additional measure of hope for remission or a cure.
The practice of utilizing chemical therapy (Chemotherapy or Chemo) for the treatment of cancer began in the 1940’s and remains a fundamental treatment for many cancer types. Concerns over Germany’s devastating use of mustard gas during World War I, led two pharmacologists from the Yale School of Medicine, Louis S. Goodman and Alfred Gilman, to discover nitrogen mustard, as an effective treatment for cancer. Given the poisonous origin of chemotherapy, patients receiving these agents experienced severe side-effects that produced limitations on the doses and the benefits of the treatment. The ability to manage these toxicities and their negative side effects became crucial to the future success of cancer chemotherapy.
Cancer immunotherapy is becoming one of the most promising cancer treatments in the past 60 years. The directing of a patients internal immune system to fight-off a full range of cancer types is one of the most promising new approaches to treatment. The treatments have the potential to achieve complete, long-lasting remissions and cancer cures, with few or no side effects, and for any cancer patient, regardless of their cancer type”. For the more than 14.1 million people who are diagnosed with cancer each year, immunotherapy treatments may provide greater potential for results then current forms of treatment.
For more than two decades Gettysburg Cancer Center (GCC) has provided comprehensive diagnostics and advanced cancer treatment throughout the greater Gettysburg, Pennsylvania area. Located in the Adams Commerce Park, their state-of-the-art facility includes Diagnostic Imaging, Gettysburg Oncology, and Gettysburg Radiation Oncology. GCC is committed to being leaders in patient care and clinical research, and is dedicated to discovering new more effective treatments for rare and hard to treat cancers.