How do I find the best drug trial for me?

Posted by susan159 @susan159, Oct 10 8:29am

I have Stage IV Colon Cancer that has metastisised to my liver. I have something like 25 tumors in my liver. I have been undergoing chemotherapy since June, 2022. In the beginning it was shrinking the tumors, but eventually the chemo became less effective. In March I had an HAI pump implanted. There were issues with my blood vessels and the pump has not been able to reach all the tumors in my liver. Right now, some (most?) of my tumors are growing. My Dr. is talking about looking for drug trials. I'm looking for advice. Should I trust my Dr (MSK) to find me a trial or should I be out there looking for myself? My original Drs. did not do HAI pumps and so never mentioned that possibility to me. In the beginning, when chemo was working, I might have been able to get an HAI pump and maybe had my liver resected. My CEA numbers went from the 300s down to 7. Liver surgery was looking possible. But unfortunately as the chemo stopped working the tumors were able to grow back so much that the Drs don't think I'll ever be able to have the liver surgery. (CEA numbers back in the 200s). My prior experience is telling me that I need to be more pro-active. I trusted my Drs to do what was best for me and either because of a lack of knowledge or an unwillingness to send me to another group of Drs., they did not get me to the most aggresive treatment when it would have done the most good. After every CT scan, the Dr. would just say, "OK keep doing the chemo." It wasn't until I questioned her, learned about the HAI pump on my own, and pushed for other options that they started me on the path to MSK. By then, it was too late, the tumors had covered my liver way to much for surgery. SO what I'm wondering is if anyone has any advice about how to find the best drug trial for me? I have much more faith in my MSK Drs than I do in my original group, but I still worry that they will be looking for trials within the MSK system and not necessarily looking for THE BEST drug trial. If anybody had any advice about A) How to find a good drug trial that isn't a scam. and B) How to evaluate weather a trial is worth trying. Or should I just trust my MSK Drs to find a trial for me? Truthfully, after almost 18 months of rough chemotherapy my mind is mush. The thought of trying to sort out any trials on my own seems overwhelming, so I would like to just trust my MSK Drs to find the next step for me; but I am leery. I feel like if I had been more proactive in the beginning I might have been able to get my life back, and I am kicking myself for not being smarter and more aggressive. I'm starting to waver on continuing the fight. There doesn't look to be a path to remission for me anymore and the prospect of chemo every other week for the rest of my life often seems like it might not be my best option. If anybody out there has any advice, I sure would appreciate it. Thanks.

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Colorectal Cancer Support Group.

I didn't know myself so started searching – this might be helpful especially the link to the National Cancer Institute:
Home that helps.

Also the discussion moderator/mentor may have better ideas.


Thank you so much for your help. I will definitely look into this.


Thank you so much for your help. I will definitely look into this.

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@susan159, you can also check out Mayo Clinic's Clinical Trial website.

You can search for clinical trials for colorectal cancer using the search tool on the site. It can be a challenge to wade through all available trials and to be sure whether or not you meet the eligibility criteria or if the trial may be available near you. Thus you might appreciate speaking with a cancer trial coordinator at Mayo Clinic to guide you through the trials available. Here's how:

Phone: 855-776-0015 (toll-free)
Online form:

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