Cancer Clinical Trials

McLeod’s participation in cancer research is supported through its association with the Southeast Clinical Oncology Research Consortium (SCOR), a group of community hospitals in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Virginia and Tennessee. For a list of clinical trials we offer through SCOR, click here.

McLeod also collaborates in research with national cancer alliances and research centers including those listed below as well as pharmaceuticals:

National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Southwest Oncology Group
Sun Coast Community Clinical Oncology Program
Cancer Trials Support Unit

The Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology (American College of Surgeons Oncology Group, Cancer and Leukemia Group B, and North Central Cancer Treatment Group) NRG which consists of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP), the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG), and the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) Comprehensive Cancer Center of Wake Forest University The University of Rochester Cancer Center

Patients and physicians who participate in cancer research through McLeod also have access to three clinical research professionals who offer guidance and support. Jo Capostosti, RN, BSN, CCRP; Sheila Florin, RN; and Martha Adams, RN, MSN, OCN, CCRP; are responsible for coordinating the research protocols for McLeod.

Oncology is one of the largest areas of research at McLeod. Currently, the department has more than 100 patients involved in cancer studies and between 20 to 25 protocols open that patients can be enrolled in. Areas of cancer clinical research currently available at McLeod include: Brain Cancer, Breast Cancer, Head & Neck Cancer, Leukemia, Pancreatic Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Sarcoma, Small or Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer and Smoking Cessation.

Cancer Research at McLeod Health
What You Should Know
When individuals are first diagnosed with cancer, they experience a myriad of emotions from shock and denial to anger and fear. Once the initial feelings have sunk in completely, patients have a choice to make on how to fight and beat the cancer. One of the first steps in the process is to learn as much as possible about the specific cancer you are fighting and to discuss with your doctor the best treatment options. One option to consider is participation in a clinical trial. This is a research method used to find better ways to prevent or treat a disease. Clinical trials help doctors determine if a new treatment works, and if it is safe for all patients. Thousands of cancer patients have taken part in this kind of research. And, all of today’s cancer drugs were initially tested through clinical trials.

Learn as Much as You Can
When you are first diagnosed with cancer, learn all you can about your treatment options. Most people have concerns about taking part in clinical trials because they’re not sure what is involved. Educating yourself about clinical trials is the best way to know whether you are making a good choice for your situation.

There is no right or wrong choice when it comes to taking part in a clinical trial. The decision to participate in a trial is a very personal one. You should consider the benefits and risks of a trial, and then determine what you hope to gain by taking part in a study.

How Clinical Trials Work
After clinical trials are developed by physicians, they are then reviewed by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Upon receiving NCI approval, trials are released to the institutional review boards of participating hospitals.

All new cancer treatments must first be tested in clinical trials. There are three phases to the process. A treatment must pass all of these steps before it can be approved by the FDA (Food & Drug Administration) for widespread use. The McLeod Cancer Center for Treatment & Research enrolls patients in Phase II and Phase III trials.

Phase II
A small number of patients are selected for participation in this phase of cancer research. Phase II clinical trials test the treatment to see if it works against a certain type of cancer. If it does work, the treatment moves on to Phase III.

Phase III
This phase of cancer research involves hundreds, sometimes thousands, of patients. The goal is to compare the new treatment to the best known treatment for a specific kind of cancer. Phase III clinical trials are often conducted in local hospitals, but they may also be conducted in cancer clinics and doctors’ offices. If you decide to join a clinical trial, you will more than likely enter a Phase III clinical trial.

Who Can Answer My Questions About Clinical Trials?
For more information on Cancer Clinical Trials, call the McLeod Cancer Research office at (843) 777-6387 or 777-6388; or visit the following website at