National Cancer Institute: www.cancer.gov
American Cancer Society: www.cancer.org
Information about Clinical Trials: www.clinicaltrials.gov
This website is a registry of all clinical studies around the world. Patients can search for ongoing clinical trials for their particular cancer and location.
If you don’t have a medical advocate among your friends and family, another possible resource might be a person called a “patient navigator.” Several cancer centers have someone on standby to counsel and educate you after a diagnosis, help you understand your treatment options and connect you with resources. These “patient navigators” may be trained professionals or other patients with the same cancer.
The American Cancer Society can connect you with a patient navigator at a cancer treatment center. Their phone number is: 1-800-227-2345
INFORMATION ABOUT ACCESS TO FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE
This website (which is in the process of being updated) offers patients tips and information about managing the cost of cancer. It also hosts a database of organizations that may be able to provide financial assistance.
While the American Cancer Society does not offer direct financial assistance, they can help cancer patients and survivors who are facing insurance or financial challenges find information and resources to help. Viewers who call their 24-hour toll-free cancer information line at 800.227.2345 can talk to a specialist to learn more.
Below is an article posted on the American Society of Clinical Oncology's website about what may be involved in seeking a second opinion. It offers tips about what you might need to bring to your appointment and making sure you are covered by insurance.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)
The type of cancer that Tom Brokaw has is multiple myeloma, the second most common blood cancer. In 2015, there will be an estimated 26,850 new myeloma cases diagnosed.
The disease starts in the plasma cells in bone marrow. When the plasma cells become malignant, they create a defective protein that can grow and crowd out the normal cells that help to fight infection and disease. When the bad protein cells move into the bone, they cause tumors. If the malignant cells form a tumor, it is called myeloma. If multiple tumors are formed, the disease is called multiple myeloma.
While there is still a way to go in finding a cure for multiple myeloma, industry, academia, and organizations like the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)—a non-profit research organization that focuses on accelerating drug development for multiple myeloma—are working together like never before to transform the treatment landscape for patients. Profound advances in research, an explosion of information and data, and increased collaboration are improving treatment of the disease. Since 2003, the FDA has approved seven treatments for multiple myeloma and there are currently three multiple myeloma treatments under FDA review and 27 treatments in Phase 3 development. The five-year survival rate for multiple myeloma has increased by 60 percent and the expected lifespan has tripled from just 20 years ago.
To learn more about multiple myeloma, visit www.themmrf.org.