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What is a research study?

A research study helps scientists learn more about a disease or condition and explores the safety and effectiveness of a potential treatment to better manage it. That's why the volunteers who take part in clinical research are so important. It's because of their generous time and contributions to research that new and better drugs are able to be made.

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Are clinical trials only for advanced cancer?

Our fight against cancer is not limited to advanced cancer. It is against all stages of cancer. Often, we research a study medicine in advanced cancer first. Then, if clinical trials show that the study medicine is safe and effective in advanced cancer, we next research it in earlier stages of cancer.

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What is a study drug?

A drug that is being investigated in a study.

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Is there a chance I might receive a placebo instead of the study medicine in a cancer clinical trial?

Yes. However, in a cancer study, participants who receive the placebo also receive the current standard of care’ for their cancer. Standard of care is the established treatment that is used for a condition, and is incorporated into the design of the study.

We learn about the efficacy and safety of the study medicine by comparing the experiences of the participants who receive the study medicine with those who receive the placebo as well as the current standard of care for their cancer.

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Do I have to go to a different oncologist if I participate in a cancer clinical trial?

It depends on whether your oncologist is on the clinical study team. As part of a clinical trial, your study-related medical care is provided by the study team at the location where you’re participating. This includes the principal investigator (study doctor) — the healthcare professional who conducts and takes responsibility for the study at that location — as well as other study team members.

During your clinical trial, you may also continue to see your regular medical doctors for any care that is not related to the study. It is important for you to tell your study team about other conditions you might have, and to let them know which other doctors are caring for you. This helps the study team coordinate your overall care. It is equally important to tell your other doctors about your participation in your study.

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What is a subcutaneous injection?

A needle inserted under the skin to deliver the study drug. During this study, a healthcare professional will give the injection either at home or at the study clinic.

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What is a placebo?

A substance sometimes used in studies that contains no active ingredients but looks like the study drug. Placebos are used to compare the experiences of the participants who receive the study drug with those who receive the placebo.

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What is a caregiver?

A caregiver is someone who knows you well and provides support related to your condition.

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Will I still see my regular doctor?

This study does not replace regular medical care, so you will still receive the usual support from your primary care doctor.

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Can I leave the study?

Participating in a study is completely your choice. You can choose to take part and then change your mind at any time and for any reason without impacting your regular medical care.

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