While I was waiting, I met with Dr. Dung Thi Le, the principal investigator at Hopkins for this trial. I asked her about the math in the supplemental reading of my CT scan, which showed that the size of two of my focused tumors had decreased from 32 mm to 16 mm. She explained that 32 mm was the sum of the transient axis measurements of those two tumors as shown in the baseline scan on 2/10/15. 16 mm was the sum of the the transient axis measurements of those same two tumors from my 3/24/15 scan.
I knew that Dr. Le did not specialize in bladder cancer — she's a GI oncologist — so I asked if she was surprised at the 50% discount in size of my tumors after just three infusions. Although I was her first bladder cancer patient in this trial, she said that she had received favorable reports from different trial locations in regards to the outcome of nivolumab on metastatic bladder cancer. As a result, she said that she was not surprised by the discount in my tumors, because "we notice it works on bladder cancer." Then she smiled and said that she was still more than happy to look the resultseasily.
She added that the trial had firstly sought about four hundred patients, and more than 800 have enrolled. There has been very high demand for this immunotherapy drug. And in seeing my resultseasily, one can bear in mind why.
Dr. Le pulled up the aspect-by-aspect images of the earlier than and after CT scans of my tumors on the computer screen, and showed how the nodes had reduced in size. Her researchers formerly had intently made the measurements and saved them on the scanned images. I asked about the size of my supraclavicular node — the explicit metastatic site — but she was unable to pull up that photograph. It was reputedly not one amongst my target nodes, so I'm not sure how much that has changed in size.
We mentioned how long I would hinder going on the trial. She said that their goal was for me to have a "complete response" (or CR) on all of my tumors. CR is defined as the tumors shrinking to lower than 10 mm on the transient axis. CR isn't a similar as being "cured" of cancer, on the different hand it — the standard definition of a "cure" is five years with no detectible ailment. If and when I achieve CR, then we will refer to the oncologists how much longer I will stay on the nivolumab. That decision will be impressed by the pointers for the clinical trial. One of the things that Bristol Myers Squibb requirements to find out out is how long the drug works to hinder the metastatic cancer suppressed. There is insufficient statistics on how long nivolumab works on mets BC after CR has been completed, and the trial can last as long as two years, as long as the drug appears to be to be working and the patient is willing.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves. My new goal is to get to CR first. So I made my way over to the infusion area and waited. I was supposed to leap my infusion at 12:30, and my flight from BWI to Florida was at four:20. Infusion takes a minimum of an hour. I was still waiting at 1:30. My nurse said that the nivolumab had still not arrived from the pharmacy. I told my nurse about my flight, and so he were given me organize in a chair and went to bug the pharmacy. Finally, at 2 pm the drug arrived and I was hooked up. I was calculating times in my head – how long to force from Hopkins to the airport, how long to park and get to the terminal, how long security would take, etc. It would be tight.
At 3:02 pm, the infusion was done, and I bolted out of the hospital. Kirsten was waiting in the car, and we took off for the airport. Traffic was light, parking was easy, the shuttle was waiting, no person was in the security line, our flight was at the nearest gate to security, and we arrived just earlier than boarding started. Another religion selling rumor is born.