Appalling Participation in Cancer Trials

According to a report in the Annals of Surgery, not many patients who have endured cancer surgery participate in clinical trials involving new therapies.

The vast majority of the patients who end up participating in trials are younger and generally white, thereby raising concerns about the efficacy of the drug after approval because these trial subjects are not an actual representative of the real-world population.

On exploring and analyzing data from the California cancer registry, researchers found that only about six of every 1000, or 1566 of nearly 245 000 patients, were involved in a trial.

There is neither logic nor a universal answer to whether a cancer patient’s participation in the trial would prove to be beneficial. A cancer researcher at Princess Margaret Hospital, Monika Krzyzanowska, noted, “patients should inquire about what clinical trials are available and figure out if there is something available for them.”

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