Cancer researchers are conducting thousands of clinical trials to test new drugs and drug combinations. Patients will benefit from doing some of their own research to find a trial that might be right for them. There also are anti-cancer drugs that have recently been approved by the FDA -- so they are technically "experimental" -- but science still wants to know more about their long-term effects.
- A) What are my
benefiting from a
- B) What about
some of the latest
- C) What is "off-
label" use of
- In Phase 1 trials about 5% to 20% of the participants show some positive response
to the drugs being tested – but these are the first human trials with the drug. In
more advanced trials (like Phase 2 and Phase 3) the positive response rate can be
much higher. But remember: none of these drugs have been FDA approved.
- Most of these drugs have only been FDA-approved in the last few years. But some
of them -- like Avastin, Herceptin and Rituxan -- each of annual sales of over $1
billion. Which suggests that they are popular and probably working. Combining one
of them with chemo also is a growing trend.
- This practice is controversial. It entails your doctor prescribing drugs (or a
combination of drugs) that sometimes have a cancer-killing impact, but are not
typically prescribed for that purpose.