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Monday, July 14, 2008

We are not foolish, selfish or blind: Use of Avastin for a glioblastoma

We continue to put our hopes for my father-in-law's health in Avastin. He is being treated off-label with Avastin for a glioblastoma. We are not foolish, selfish or blind for putting our hope in this expensive and controversial treatment.

When all other available treatments have an even smaller chance of providing any benefit, Avastin's positive results – however sparse – are extremely valuable to us.

The hope this drug provides our family is just as important to prolonging my father's life as the drug itself. Like many affected by cancer, we are smart advocates who do our research and know the odds. But no doctor or research study has ever told my father he couldn't be the outlier.

Advice to the families of cancer patients: Keep hope alive, and heed your cancer patient's preferences.

Read a story of a famous long-shot "outlier" survivor.

Thanks to Jana Jett Loeb for the letter to the editor, published in the July 12 New York Times.

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