The annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology takes place next week, from May 30 to June 3. It's like Christmas in the spring! One of my favorite times of the year! We get to read about new research, updates on clinical trials, and basically get a big sloppy dose of hope at what might become reality in the months and years to come. Plus, since the focus is on clinical oncology, so it's all about the front line doctors that make the decisions that affect us most directly.
And I like to think that the oncologists are just as excited about all of this. Like, cheerleader-level excited:
We've got a message for you, Cancer!
We'll make you a fiasco!
We'll punch your gut
And kick your butt
Like we know Tae kwon do!
(That's not bad for off the top of my head. All those basketball games when I watched my daughter cheer, I guess. I would have liked a better rhyme than "tae kwon do," but the punch-kick dance moves would be fantastic....)
**A little update: when I did the cheer for my daughter, she winced and said, "No! No! No!")
Anyway, ASCO starts next week, I'm super-excited, and I'm looking forward to reviewing some of the research abstracts that are available on their web site. A quick search of their abstracts shows that there are 143 presentations that deal with Follicular Lymphoma in one way or another.
I'm certainly not going to talk about all of them. Some are so specialized and obscure that I know they wouldn't apply to me, and I'm not sure how many people they would apply to. Some would, it seems to me, just cause unnecessary panic in people who read about them (like the comparison of men and women with FL. I'm not even going to link it). Some are some darn attractive, just based on their titles, that I'm not sure I can resist (I'm talking to you, SEXIE R-CHOP study of elderly male patients with low serum levels of Rituxan). And some might be interesting, but are less valuable to me, personally, because they seem dated -- like the update on the Italian study comparing R-CHOP, R-CVP, and R-FM, which are all still used, but seem like they are on there way out, except maybe CHOP, given all of the new awesome stuff that is in the pipeline.
So I'm probably going to focus on that new awesome stuff. It's what excites me and gives me hope.
(Incidentally, that SEXIE R-CHOP trial is related to the older SMARTE R-CHOP trial. I'm not making that up. I'm just a little hurt that researchers didn't invite me to participate in both of them. Maybe they're holding out for the FATT BALD TIRED MIDDLE-AGED trial.)
I'm hoping I can spend a chunk of this long weekend doing some reading and sharing the results with you over the next couple of weeks.