Disease Information

Colorectal Cancer Clinical Research

At Virginia Oncology Associates, our approach to treating colon and rectal (colorectal) cancers starts with personalized care. This is why our cancer specialists are committed to exploring new therapies and innovative diagnostic tools for creating the best treatment for you, which includes clinical trials.

Clinical trials for colorectal cancers

Clinical trials play an important role in improving treatments against colorectal cancers. The goal is for researchers to learn if new cancer treatments are safe and effective or better than the standard treatment protocols currently available to patients. Clinical trials make it possible for them to gather this important information.

Most clinical trials focus on new treatment options or different combinations of existing therapies, including drug therapies (which may or may not be chemotherapy), surgery, radiation, and others that show promise for improving survivorship. The primary purpose of colorectal cancer research is to help determine if there are new and better rectal or colon cancer treatment options for patients based on their type of cancer and its stage.

Participating in clinical trials allows VOA to be an integral part of developing new and better ways to treat colon and rectal cancers--not just our patients throughout Virginia and northeast North Carolina, but also for patients across the country.

Is a clinical trial right for me?

Your oncologist may recommend a clinical trial if they feel it’s the right cancer treatment for you and your diagnosis. It is important to understand, however, that clinical trials have certain guidelines about who can participate, so for some patients, clinical trials are not an option. These guidelines are in place to identify appropriate participants and keep them safe. Criteria are based on a variety of factors such as age, gender, previous treatment history, and the stage of your colon and/or rectal cancer. Before joining a cancer clinical trial, the participant must qualify for the study. A member of the VOA research team will be able to tell you if you qualify for a particular trial.

While there are possible benefits with clinical trials, there is the possibility of more appointments and test required as well. If a cancer research trial is suggested for you, feel free to discuss the pros and cons with your doctor and also with the people close to you. If you are considering a clinical trial for colorectal cancer, here is some further information to help you gain a better understanding of cancer clinical trials.

Leading edge research, better results

Because of our affiliation with the US Oncology Network, a worldwide leader in cancer research, our patients have the chance to participate in some of the most advanced clinical trials today. US Oncology Research, supported by McKesson Specialty Health, specializes in Phase I-IV oncology clinical trials and is one of the largest and most reputable community-based research networks in the world. With more than 1,600 available clinical trials and over 70,000 patients enrolled across the country, the program is giving patients the opportunity for a better outcome and quality of life.

Currently, colon and rectal cancer clinical trials are available at select Virginia Oncology Associates locations - including Chesapeake, Hampton (CarePlex), Newport News (Port Warwick III), Norfolk (Lake Wright), Virginia Beach (Princess Anne), and Williamsburg. For more information on participating in these research trials or if you would like to learn more about our other clinical trials, please ask your oncologist. A complete list of all of the trials available through VOA can be seen on our Available Cancer and Hematology Trials page.