Accessible Version:  Clinical Trials

Activity Instructions: The standard treatment for leukemia is a combination of the three drugs listed below, all at their standard doses. The central nervous system treatment is not part of the standard treatment.

Drug A is Prednisone. Cells have the ability to kill themselves if they become damaged. This helps keeps the body free of unhealthy cells. Presidone works by helping the body to kill damaged white blood cells.
Side effects: Increased appetite, indigestion, and nervousness

Drug B is Vincristine. When cells divide, each new cell must receive an identical set of chromosomes. Vincristine interferes with this process and stops white blood cells from dividing.
Side effects: Hair loss, constipation, and nerve damage

Drug C is Methotrexate. When cells divide, they need to make more DNA, RNA, and protein molecules. Cancer cells are rapidly dividing compared to normal cells. Methotrexate interferes with the ability of all cells to make DNA, RNA, and proteins.
Side effects: Stomach pain, shortness of breath, and blood in urine

Central Nervous System Treatment. The central nervous system treatment involves irradiating the patient’s head with X-rays while drug C (methotrexate) is injected into the spinal fluid. This approach is intended to kill cancer cells that may have escaped the effects of the earlier drug treatment and are lurking in the central nervous system

Treatment


Increased Dose
Standard Dose (Control)
Decreased Dose


Increased Dose
Standard Dose (Control)
Decreased Dose


Increased Dose
Standard Dose (Control)
Decreased Dose


Yes
No

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