From Patrick J. Ward, MD, PhD, Medical Oncologist, Hematologist and Co-Director of OHC’s Research Department

October 12, 2020

Breast cancer is no longer the most common cancer for women in the United States. This is due to decades of efforts like Breast Cancer Awareness Month that have increased awareness of the benefits of breast cancer screenings and self-exams, which lead to early detection when the response to treatments is better.

Even with these improvements, not all patients’ breast cancer is detected early and not all breast cancer responds to current treatments. For these patients, more options are needed to treat their breast cancer and restore hope for a cure.

At OHC, my colleagues and I work diligently to offer patients advanced treatment options as well as access to new, promising treatments that are not yet available to the public. We do this through one of the programs at OHC of which I am most proud – our nationally recognized clinical trials program. And we’re seeing significant results through our program.

For example, last year, I shared the story of my patient Madeline Gillotte who was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer, an aggressive form of the disease. When I met with Madeline, I told her about our clinical trial, called KEYNOTE 522, in which we were evaluating the immunotherapy drug, Keytruda, with chemotherapy for triple negative breast cancer. She enrolled in the trial and two years later, Madeline continues to do well without any signs of her cancer returning. The results continue to look promising, and because of this trial, this new treatment regimen has been submitted to the FDA for approval.

Another example is our breast cancer clinical trial in which we are evaluating the drug, pemigatinib. This drug is designed specifically to block fibroblast growth factor receptors (FGFR). These are mutations that cause cancer to grow and spread. Pemigatinib has demonstrated success in other cancers with the FGFR mutation. Therefore, OHC breast cancer experts are evaluating the drug because it looks to be promising for patients with advanced metastatic breast cancer that hasn’t responded to other treatments or is inoperable.

At OHC, we are attacking all cancer by providing patients with multiple options for treatment. This includes the new cellular therapy approach to attack your cancer, including immunotherapy and CAR-T therapy. To learn more about treatments for breast and other cancers at OHC, or to request a second opinion, visit or call 1-888-649-4800.

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