After a seven year battle against cancer, Kristin Kleinhofer has said good-bye to cancer. Save the Cord Foundation recently sat down with Kristin to learn about an amazing turn of events that saved her life. Kristin participated in a cord blood clinical trial that saved her life.
Diagnosed with leukemia three times over a seven and a half year period left Kristin with few choices. Her doctors struggled to find an appropriate treatment for her. They knew she needed a stem cell transplant but had no luck finding a bone marrow donor. After some research, Kristin decided to participate in an innovative cord blood clinical trial led by Dr. Filippo Milano at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center .
We were so impressed by Kristin and fascinated to learn about her journey through this treatment program. Watch our interview with Kristin here.
Success for Kristin and many others
The key to Kristin's success was the fact that she and her medical team were willing to explore options beyond the classic cancer treatment options. They knew she needed a stem cell transplant but could not find a bone marrow donor. After a bit of research, she learned about an opportunity to participate in clinical trial using cord blood stem cells to treat patients with leukemia. This particular clinical trial was designed to compare traditional double cord blood transplants (often used to treat cancer patients in lieu of bone marrow) with a new technique using just one expanded cord blood unit. Kristin was randomly chosen to receive a double cord blood transplant and her treatment was a success. Others in the study received the expanded units. Their results were equally impressive.
To learn more about this study and other cord blood clinical trials done by the team at Fred Hutchinson, please click here .
I want to participate in a cord blood clinical trial . . .
Clinical trials are not for everyone. Patients must always do their research in detail and be ready to listen to the advice of their medical team should they advise against it. The rules for participating in clinical trials can vary wildly from one country to another. Likewise, insurance companies may or may not be willing to cover the cost. For many patients, like Kristin, temporary relocation is necessary not just for the patient but often other members of the family. All of these factors need to be considered.
If you would like to participate in a cord blood clinical trial, please see our short guide on cord blood clinical trials where you will learn
Disclaimer: Save the Cord Foundation does not operate, endorse or participate in any clinical trials. This story and the following links have been presented for informational purposes only. Information presented on this site is not intended to be comprehensive and does not imply endorsement of any kind. Likewise, this information is not intended as medical advice. Participation in any study or clinical trial should always be discussed in detail with your healthcare provider.