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Offering more treatment options for pediatric cancer patients

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University of Virginia Cancer Center and UVA Children’s Hospital will soon offer additional treatment options to pediatric cancer patients through a new early-stage clinical trials program.

The clinical trials program is funded through a $50,000 grant from the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, which is devoted to raising money for childhood cancer research.

 

What Is an Early-Phase Clinical Trial?

Early-phase clinical trials examine the safety and effectiveness of potential new cancer treatments. Many children with cancer cared for by UVA live far from large cities where these early-phase trials are typically available, making it challenging for them to receive treatment through these trials.

“We want to make sure these types of treatments and trials are available to patients in our region, so that they can receive cutting-edge therapies as part of early-phase clinical trials that help us learn more about these cancers and how to treat them,” said William C. Petersen Jr., MD, a pediatric oncologist at UVA Cancer Center and UVA Children’s Hospital. “

 

Clinical Trials Opening Soon

The grant money will support the hiring of a nurse clinician and a clinical research assistant to help care for patients in these trials as well as some imaging and lab tests for clinical trial participants.

UVA hopes to begin offering these early-phase clinical trials soon, Petersen said, primarily to children whose cancer has returned.

 

About UVA Cancer Center

UVA Cancer Center is accredited by the Commission on Cancer and is one of 67 National Cancer Institute (NCI) designated cancer centers in the U.S. for its work in cancer research, prevention, detection and treatment. UVA Cancer Center provides comprehensive, world-class cancer treatment in an environment of caring for patients across Virginia, led by doctors who have been honored by publications such as Best Doctors in America® and America’s Top Doctors®.

 

About UVA Children’s Hospital

UVA Children’s Hospital provides primary and specialty care in more than 30 specialties to children throughout Virginia. It includes a hospital-within-a-hospital at UVA Medical Center with 111 beds, a dedicated pediatric emergency department, a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for infants, a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit for children younger than 18 and the UVA Child Health Research Center to develop breakthrough treatments for children. The Battle Building, opening in 2014, will consolidate outpatient children’s care at a single location in Charlottesville.

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