A clinical trial is one of the final stages in a careful research process to identify safe and effective new methods of cancer prevention, detection or treatment. NorthBay Cancer Center Clinical Trials program provides patients access to many cooperative group trials through association with the UC Davis Cancer Center, City of Hope National Medical Center and the Cancer Trials Support Unit. This means that local patients fighting cancer are usually able to stay in our community for the most promising treatments available.
Current Clinical Trials
For more information about our clinical trials program, please call the Cancer Center at (707) 646-4000 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a list of current trials, click this link: NorthBay Cancer Center Clinical Trials (pdf)Frequently Asked Questions
A. Clinical trials are research studies in which people help doctors find ways to improve health and cancer care. Each study tries to answer scientific questions and to find better ways to prevent, diagnose, or treat cancer.
A. A clinical trial is one of the final stages of a long and careful cancer research process. Studies are performed with cancer patients to find out whether promising approaches to cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment are safe and effective. Clinical trials often become the latest treatment protocols.
A. Most new drugs are tested in a series of steps called phases. These phases provide researchers with a process that helps them collect reliable information and protect the patient. The three phases of clinical trial are:
A. The NorthBay Cancer Center participates in a number of cancer related clinical trials.
Many of the trials are conducted in conjunction with the National Cancer Institute through research groups such as National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project, Southwest Oncology Group, and the Clinical Trials Support Unit.
Other clinical trials include pharmaceutical company sponsored trials and trials offered in cooperation with other facilities. These trials focus primarily on the prevention and treatment of cancer. Chemotherapy is administered and monitored by specially trained nurses under the direction of medical oncologists Dr. James Long and Dr. Brian Vikstrom. This means that patients fighting cancer are usually able to stay in our community for the most promising treatments available.
The NorthBay Cancer Center also participates in nursing studies examining symptoms in patients undergoing cancer treatments.
A. NorthBay Cancer Center can offer patients promising treatments through clinical trials programs. Cancer Center medical director, Dr. James Long, has a history of participation in a variety of clinical trials and is well qualified to conduct clinical trials in the community. Such participation increases community access to the latest treatments, reducing the need for patient to travel to university hospitals. The NorthBay Cancer Center provides patients with access to many clinical trial therapies, making the center as advanced as any program in Northern California for treating the vast majority of cancers.
A. Only you can make the decision about whether or not to participate in a clinical trial. Dr. James Long and the rest of the NorthBay Cancer Center staff will provide you with as much information as possible for you to make the best decision for you. Before you make your decision, we also recommend that you:
A. Potential benefits include:
Potential risks include:
A. Participants in clinical trials are protected through strict government regulations. Before a government-funded clinical trial can begin, the trial plan (also called a protocol) must be approved. During the trial, protocols are frequently reviewed to ensure the treatment plan is being followed.
Patients are further protected by the high clinical standards at the NorthBay Cancer Center. Our doctors and nurses, who are specially trained to conduct clinical trials, monitor patients on clinical trials very closely through examinations and conversations on the phone and in person. This way our staff can detect any potential side effects and treat them.
Regulations require the researchers performing studies to thoroughly inform patients about a study's treatments and tests and their possible benefits and risks before a patient decides whether or not to participate in any study. This process is called informed consent.
A. Informed consent is a process where you decide whether or not to participate in a clinical trial. As part of this process, the NorthBay Cancer Center staff will make sure you learn as much as possible about a clinical trial before you decide. In addition to talking with you about the facts about the particular clinical trial, you will also be provided with a written consent form that includes some of this information. This form can be taken home to read and discuss with your family. The consent form will include details about:
Don't hesitate to ask questions until you have all the information you need. The informed consent process continues as long as you participate in the clinical trial. You can change your mind and leave the study whenever you want -- before the study starts or at any time during the study or follow-up period. The NorthBay Cancer Center can continue to care for you, even if you decide to leave the trial and be treated with standard treatment protocols.
A. Placebos ("dummy" pills that contain no active ingredient) are very rarely used in cancer trials. Most treatment trials are used to compare a new treatment with the current standard treatment. Patients are randomly assigned to a group receiving the new treatment and the current standard. Placebos may be used for comparison when no standard treatment exists for a particular cancer. In this case, you will be told of this possibility during the informed consent process.
A. Please call the NorthBay Cancer Center clinical trials office at (707) 646-4000.
The links below are also excellent sources of information.
National Cancer Institute
NorthBay Medical Center: 707-646-5000 NorthBay VacaValley Hospital 707-624-7000
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