The American Cancer Society is joining Doctors Hospital of Augusta, Georgia Health Sciences Cancer Center and University Hospital in a new research study called the Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3).
CPS-3 will help researchers better understand the genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors that cause or prevent cancer.
“This study will give our children and our grandchildren tools to stay healthy and avoid a cancer diagnosis,” said Andi Van Airsdale, community manager with the American Cancer Society.
The study is open to anyone between the ages of 30 and 65 who has never been diagnosed with cancer, not including basal or squamous cell skin cancer, and who is willing to make a long-term commitment to the study, which involves completing follow-up surveys at home for the next 20 to 30 years.
Initial enrollment in the study requires two steps. First, visit www.cps3augusta.com to schedule an appointment. A confirmation e-mail will be sent with instructions to go online and complete the first and more comprehensive survey. This survey will ask questions regarding medication use, family history of cancer, lifestyle and other behaviors. This survey must be completed prior to the appointment time.
“Research can also be done from this work. The questionnaire is very specific,” said Van Airsdale.
At the appointment, participants will be asked to sign an informed consent form, complete a brief survey and provide a waist circumference measurement and a small blood sample, similar to a doctor’s visit. The blood sample will be taken by a certified, trained phlebotomist. The appointment should last approximately 30 minutes.
Following enrollment, participants will periodically receive mailed surveys at home every few years to update their information. They will also receive annual study newsletters with updates on research taking place in the Cancer Prevention Studies.
All personal information and any individual results of blood analyses that may be performed will be kept strictly confidential by American Cancer Society research staff. There is no cost to participate in the study.
Van Airsdale said this is the first time a 20-year study will track not only who gets cancer, but will also have a baseline blood test from when they were cancer-free to compare it to.
“This is a huge study, involving over 300,000 people,” she said. “It is groundbreaking and has never been done before.”
Enrollment will be at University Hospital on Walton Way on April 17 from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the University Room located in the Education Wing on the third floor. Doctors Hospital of Augusta will hold enrollment on April 18 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in Classroom 2, located in the south tower of the main hospital. Enrollment will be held at Georgia Health Sciences Cancer Center on April 19 from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in room AN1305.
Those who are not eligible to enroll in the study can help by becoming advocates for CPS-3 and encouraging those close to them to take part in this potentially life-saving study.