This first of two articles is intended to give the public an oncologist's perspective on interpreting data from clinical trials and understanding the mechanism of action of medication. I will provide an inside look at what we in the oncology community take into consideration when treating our patients. It is important to be able to accurately and scientifically assess the impact of clinical trial data and to be aware of possible misrepresentations or pitfalls in the popular media.
I am a board-certified medical oncologist and hematologist in one of the largest oncology groups in the Midwest. As part of my practice, I also serve as the hospital's chairman of cancer services and the director of the cancer center. Our practice has over 100 clinical trials in all areas of cancer medicine, and I serve as the principal investigator on several of those clinical trials.