Sunday, June 17, 2012

Clinical Trial?!?

A random artichoke plant along the road off Green Lake. Beautiful!

I have big news, but I have to start at the beginning.......

I've been exhausted trying to navigate supplements, treatments, etc. It has gotten so bad that I haven't been sleeping well, and I'm constantly tired. After my most recent IV treatment, Danny and I realized that if we're going to fight to get healthy, we need to exercise every avenue. And yet, we don't have unlimited funds, so we have to be smart about the treatment choices. Instead of paying for IV treatments, which are good, we need to head for the hills for something great. So.......I contacted Dr Germany's clinic in Duderstadt. I've been gathering information about the various treatments available, including dendritic cell therapy, immunotherapy, and hyperthermia - all three treatments are very effective against brain cancer, especially when used in combination. After talking with Dr M, at the clinic, Danny and I were all in - incredibly excited and hopeful. We vetted the clinic and with no ill information around, we were convinced. We even started talks with family friends about acquiring personal private loans to help cover the costs.

As you can probably read, things changed. There's nothing wrong with Dr Germany's clinic, in fact we may still end up heading there, but guess what.....this is huge.....I might be accepted into a clinical trial. Let me tell you about it.....

There is a clinical trial at UCLA for low grade gliomas using dendritic cell therapy, headed by Dr Linda Liau. I would need to get another brain surgery to harvest more tumor tissue, it's important to use the most fresh tissue available. I would not have to do radiation or chemotherapy. The only cost would be whatever my insurance would not cover from the brain surgery, MRIs, blood tests, etc. Whatever the cost, it should still be cheaper than going to Germany, and with the fresh tumor tissue the treatment would be more effective. I double checked and since this is a phase IIa clinical trial, there will be no control group, no placebo, all patients would receive treatment, a dendritic cell vaccine personally created with their own tumor tissue. This is HUGE!! I still don't know if I'll get accepted into the clinical trial, but I'm very hopeful. Instead of heading to Germany, I might be headed to LA. Either way, we're headed somewhere, whether it be Germany or LA, something is happening.

I had been reading about the clinical trials in the USA, there's one currently being conducted at Swedish, here in Seattle, but it's for glioblastomas. I knew that Dr Liau was conducting a clinical trial at UCLA for low grade gliomas, but foolishly, I had assumed that I would have to do radiation or chemotherapy first, and I assumed that there would be a control group with placebos. This is fantastic, and exciting. The only reason I contacted Dr Liau is because my friend Jessica, who is also fighting a glioma, emailed me with correspondence. I figured I might as well email the good doctor in charge. I'm always interested in getting my questions answered, and thank goodness I did. I could have missed out on an amazing opportunity. Of course, I have not been accepted into the trial yet, but I'm hopeful. And if it doesn't work out, then, well, I'll just head to Germany. I have wonderful sulforaphane pills, curcumin, and all sorts of fantastic things that on their own could cure me in their own right, but truth is, Dan and I feel like we should attack everything from all directions....because....why not?!? Let's do this. Anyone interested in another head shaving........

3 comments:

  1. INCREDIBLE NEWS Jess!!! Either way you would be agressively attacking Hermie and it is worth "calling out all the big guns"! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you to get into the clinical trials at UCLA! It is an excellent research hospital and would be more economical for you. Also- on a selfish note- you would be in SO CAL for awhile and perhaps I would get a chance to me you! Keep us posted- I may need to shave my head for this one! HA! Love, Patti

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  2. Congratulations Jess! Your news made me cry with happiness. Not only because I have high hopes for you to beat Hermie, but because you will be receiving help with all the logistics of your treatment. That's huge! You will have so much more time and energy to do your part..Yippeee!!!

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  3. Such fabulous news, Jess! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you to be accepted into the trial. Some California sunshine will do you both some good as well. Good thoughts and positive energy for both you and Danny.

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