Every pancreatic cancer patient is different. Patients who receive treatment based on their biology can live longer. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network strongly recommends all pancreatic cancer patients get genetic testing for inherited mutations as soon as possible after diagnosis and biomarker testing of their tumor tissue to help determine the best treatment options. Patients should discuss both tests with their care team. The tests can be available through their treating institution or PanCAN’s Know Your Tumor® precision medicine service. Genetic testing for inherited mutations can also inform family members of risk regardless of family history.
What is precision medicine?
Precision medicine is treatment based on the individual patient’s biology. PanCAN’s Know Your Tumor precision medicine service uses two types of testing – genetic testing for inherited mutations and biomarker testing of your tumor tissue (also called molecular profiling) – to look for genetic mutations.
It is important to consider this information because a treatment that works well for one person may not work as well for someone else. Knowing the mutations in your tumor or body will help you and your healthcare team select treatment options – including clinical trials – that are likely to work best for you and may not have been considered otherwise. Know Your Tumor reports provide valuable insight to help support the treatment decisions you make with your healthcare team.
How long will it be before I receive my Know Your Tumor report?
Once our partner, Tempus, receives the tumor sample, please allow 14 days for the complete report of personalized treatment options to be emailed to your doctor. If you are not currently on treatment, you should begin treatment decided upon by you and your doctor while waiting to receive the report. Upon receiving the report, you and your doctor can review the information to guide the decision on your next treatment, if needed. If you are currently on treatment, you should continue that treatment, but also start the Know Your Tumor process as soon as possible so that you may have the report available if you need to make another treatment decision.
Who is Tempus?
Tempus is a CLIA-certified laboratory that the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network partners with to help pancreatic cancer patients get genetic testing for inherited mutations and tumor tissue biomarker testing.
Your healthcare team will work with Tempus to submit a tissue sample for biomarker testing (as well as a blood or saliva sample, if you choose to get genetic testing for inherited mutations). Once Tempus receives the tumor tissue, please allow 14 days for the complete report of personalized treatment options to be emailed to your doctor.
What will Know Your Tumor cost me?
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network will cover the cost of testing by Tempus, a CLIA-certified laboratory. Tempus will provide your doctor with a report, including treatment options.
Medical procedures – including biopsies – will be billed to the patient’s insurance. The patient will be responsible for any co-pay, co-insurance or insurance deductible associated with a procedure to obtain tumor tissue.
Should insurance coverage issues arise, our Know Your Tumor CareLine (in partnership with the Patient Advocate Foundation) may be able to help.
What if my insurance will not cover the biomarker-based treatment on my report?
Our Know Your Tumor CareLine (in partnership with the Patient Advocate Foundation) can help you navigate insurance challenges that arise, including obstacles to getting coverage for treatment listed on your Know Your Tumor report.
What will I have to do during the Know Your Tumor process?
You and your doctor both play an important role in this process. You will be asked to fill out consent forms and undergo a procedure to obtain a tissue sample (if one is not already available). You should let your doctor know this service is important to you. In order to receive your report as quickly as possible and ensure program completion, it is important for your doctor to respond to any communication from Tempus in a timely manner.
Can my report contribute to research?
Help accelerate pancreatic cancer research by joining our Patient Registry. The Patient Registry is a global online database created to look for patterns in treatments, side effect management and diagnostics. By sharing your experiences, as well as your Know Your Tumor report, you’re giving researchers access to crucial data to dive into, helping them make discoveries that will improve treatment options and patient outcomes. The more information we share with researchers, the more data they will have to make new discoveries.
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