The Personal Side of Clinical Trials

It was fall 2012 and the air was crisp outside. Inside, it was just another chaotic day at work. My coworker and friend Drea hadn’t been feeling well and the whole office was feeling the effects. She was always full of laughter, jokes, and had a bright demeanor but something was just…off. When we all finally convinced her to go to the doctor after she had shared an array of concerning symptoms, we weren’t prepared for the diagnosis we would all be met with.

She called the office and let us know that her white blood cell count was abnormally high. She also needed a bone marrow test. We eventually discovered that my good friend had Leukemia. My coworker, a breast cancer survivor herself, admitted that she had a feeling this diagnosis was coming when Drea had shared her symptoms. I had no idea. I felt like I had been smacked in the face.

Drea and I had worked together at a previous job and she was the reason I had made the move to the current office. She was my co-worker and friend, but she was also a wife, a mother, and a daughter. My heart ached for her and what she faced. What was she going to do?

Drea never returned to work, but we all met up with her to have dinner and talk about things. Through the hugs and the tears, Drea told us that after talking with her doctors about her options, she was going to Chicago (where her family lived) and was going to be part of a clinical trial. We weren’t sure what to think, but were all full of hope.

The next few months were hard. Drea was in Chicago undergoing treatments and we spent a lot of time worrying. Through all of the hardship, we got a miracle. Drea’s Leukemia was finally in remission.

Participating in the clinical trial was a life-altering decision and maybe even a last resort for Drea. While choosing to participate in a clinical trial is a very personal decision, the impact it can have on your life or the lives of others can be priceless.

Clinical trials are synonymous with hope. Hope for cures, hope for healing, hope for the future. Breakthrough medications and treatments for conditions that affect each and every one of us are possible because of clinical trials. If you’re ready to get involved, CLICK HERE and enter your zip code to see what studies are enrolling near you.