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Clinical Research Trials Open to the Public

People in Southeast Georgia and the Lowcountry are among a nationally select group of people invited to enroll in cancer research trials with St. Joseph’s/Candler Institute for Regional Cancer Care and Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, one of the nation’s top cancer research centers.

Residents from 26 counties in Southeast Georgia, including Chatham, Bryan, Effingham and Liberty, along with Beaufort and Jasper counties in South Carolina are eligible to participate in the studies through St. Joseph’s/Candler.

Last October, St. Joseph’s/Candler was one of nine hospitals invited to affiliate with the prestigious Tampa-based H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, the third largest National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Care Center. The NCI designation is the highest level of recognition given to a cancer center. NCI-designated centers interconnect basic, clinical and prevention with control and population-based research while applying them to the community through clinical and education programs.

As an affiliate, St. Joseph’s/Candler offers patients access to the highest level of cancer research with world-renowned physicians, including participation in clinical trials and increased access to consultations. The affiliation served the Moffitt Institute’s goal to reach a larger portion of the African American community through Savannah.

St. Joseph’s/Candler Institute for Regional Cancer Care is one of eight American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer network- approved cancer programs. The institute concentrates on clinical, educational and research resources for cancer prevention, early detection and screening as well as treatment and supportive care. Services include medical, surgical and radiation oncology with a comprehensive tumor registry program and site-specific cancer conferences.  The underserved community access to cancer screenings through the “Screen Machine,” a vehicle that travels through Savannah and surrounding communities providing screenings.

By the end of 2003, St. Joseph’s/Candler anticipates enrolling approximately 80 to100 studies.
Two studies open for enrollment at St. Joseph’s/Candler focus on improving quality of life for people battling cancer.
One study investigates the effect of a stress management program that has been successful in relieving anxiety and fatigue in chemotherapy patients. Participants must be 18 years or older, diagnosed with cancer and scheduled to receive at least 12 radiotherapy treatments over 21 days. Excluding factors include patients previously treated with radiotherapy or scheduled to receive a certain type of chemotherapy. A percentage of the 218 participants will be enrolled at St. Joseph’s/Candler.

A second study compares the intensity of nausea, anxiety and quality of life experienced among three groups of women undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer. Participants include adult women who experienced a measured amount of nausea with previous chemotherapy treatments and are starting their second or third cycle of therapy. A percentage of the 237 participants will be enrolled at St. Joseph’s/Candler.

The H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center reports more than 6,000 inpatient and 171,000 outpatient visits a year through a team of 280 physicians. The work of the center’s 600 researchers is funded by $40 million in federal and corporate research grants each year. Highly respected for its work in the oncology, the Institute has been ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top ten Cancer Institutes in the country.

Those interested in enrolling in Moffitt cancer research trials can contact the Office of Research at St. Joseph’s/Candler: (912) 692-2471.

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