Scott Nelson is a 12-year pancreatic cancer survivor and research advocate with a goal to make the clinical trials experience better for patients. He has firsthand experience, crediting the success of his treatment, in large part, to a clinical trial.
“If I hadn’t stopped to consider my options, including clinical trials, I wouldn’t be alive. I wouldn’t have met my grandchildren.”
Scott feels a responsibility to help others since so many people helped him. He encourages patients to look at all of their treatment options, including clinical trials, and stresses this is especially important for pancreatic cancer.
“When you get the diagnosis, you can’t even think. You’re in shock. You have to make life-changing decisions, and many people feel they don’t know how to navigate the medical system.”
Through his research advocacy, Scott is working to make the process easier for patients enrolling in clinical trials.
“The patient perspective is really important to help researchers make clinical trials more patient friendly. My advocacy work aims to improve a patient’s understanding of enrollment documents, knowledge of the additional support that is available to help improve quality of life, clarity of the details of a trial and more.”
Clinical trials are the only way to make advances in the treatment of pancreatic cancer. With a better patient experience, enrollment rates can increase and lead to better treatment options for patients.
Scott wants patients and their families to know, “You are not in this alone, and people do survive this. There are many people – including doctors, nurses, researchers, survivors, patients, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network – and resources that are available to you. Build your support network and use these resources.”
Pancreatic cancer patients who participate in clinical research have better outcomes. Every treatment available today was approved through a clinical trial. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network strongly recommends clinical trials at diagnosis and during every treatment decision.
We’re always here to help. Contact a PanCAN Patient Services Case Manager for in-depth details about clinical trials and to get your questions answered. Case Managers are available Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. Pacific Time.