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AS A PARENT OF A CHILD WITH CANCER, WOULD YOU ALLOW YOUR CHILD TO JOIN A CLINICAL TRIAL? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Childhood cancers are most often successfully treated, and several factors have led to that success, a study by Yoram Unguru, a medical ethicist at Johns Hopkins and a childhood cancer expert, concludes. Yet Unguru identifies a big challenge parents must face when enrolling their child with cancer in a clinical trial.

UNGURU: The majority of children with cancer get treated on a clinical trial. Thereís this notion that clinical trials are new, they afford some novel approach and therefore novel is better. Thatís not always the case but that is the thinking of many in the field. Parents will latch onto that. Oftentimes however these are randomized trials. I donít decide if the child whom Iím treating is going to get the experimental arm of a trial or what we call the standard arm of the trial. Thatís done by a computer bank but parents oftentimes say, Iím going to enroll in the trial but only if Iím guaranteed Iím getting the novel, experimental arm.       :36

At Johns Hopkins, Iím Elizabeth Tracey.


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