When it comes to treating and managing cancer, clinical trials are an invaluable tool for doctors and researchers. As the research and treatment of cancer continue to evolve, clinical trials provide an opportunity to develop new treatments and therapies to combat the disease.
For children with cancer, clinical trials can be a source of hope. By participating in a clinical trial, children can be part of the process of finding new treatments and therapies for their disease. Children’s Cancer Research Fund (CCRF) has played a critical role in improving access to cutting-edge cancer care. Through its support of clinical trials, CCRF is helping to ensure that children with cancer have access to the latest and most effective treatments, as they may not be available to them otherwise.
Clinical trials test new ways to:
- Treat cancer
- Find and diagnose cancer
- Prevent cancer
- Manage symptoms of cancer and side effects from its treatment
What are the phases of clinical trials?
Clinical trials occur in four phases. Each phase serves a different purpose. In Phase 1, researchers test the safety of a new treatment. This phase is often done with only a small number of patients. The goal is to determine if the treatment is safe and to identify any potential side effects.
In Phases 2 and 3, the focus shifts to efficacy. In Phase 2, researchers look at whether the treatment is effective in a larger group of patients. Phase 3 compares the treatment to existing treatments to see if it is more effective. Phase 4 occurs after the treatment has been approved and is already in use. This phase looks at the long-term effectiveness and safety of the treatment.
Why do children participate in clinical trials?
At the end of the day, clinical trials are essential for the advancement of cancer treatments and therapies. Cancer remains the most common cause of death by disease among children in the U.S. By participating in a clinical trial, children with cancer have the chance to receive the latest treatments and therapies available. This can mean the difference between life and death for some children.
CCRF has funded research that has led to clinical trials and improved treatment options for a variety of cancer types. To learn more, read about some of the recently funded clinical trials:
Your support propels bold ideas forward and empowers researchers to discover treatments that are better and safer for kids, and ensure every child can have a long, healthy life after cancer.