Breathe Easy: Clinical Trial for IPF Offered at Jamaica Hospital

Having Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), the stiffening and scarring of the lungs, can make breathing extremely difficult and life less enjoyable. With no known cure, clinical trials of new treatments have become important in helping to improve the outcomes of patients with IPF. Jamaica Hospital is accepting patients for enrollment in the ASCEND trial, a clinical study sponsored by biotechnology company InterMune.

The ASCEND study provides patients with the opportunity to try pirfenidone, a new and investigational treatment for IPF, and is designed to evaluate its effectiveness and safety.

“IPF is a serious pulmonary condition and over time, its symptoms worsen,” explained Dr. Craig Thurm, Director of Pulmonary Diseases at Jamaica Hospital. “Participation in clinical trials provides patients with access to potentially effective medications—medications they would not have access to otherwise.”

To be eligible for this study, Dr. Thurm states that patients must:
• Be between 40 and 80 years of age
• Have been diagnosed with IPF for at least six months
• Have not smoked within the last three months and is willing to abstain from smoking during the study

The study lasts 52 weeks and involves approximately 12 visits to Jamaica Hospital. Eligible patients who complete the study will be offered the opportunity to receive pirfenidone as part of an open label study.

If you have IPF, meet this criteria, and are interested in participating in the ASCEND trial, please call Kelly Cervellione, Research Associate at 718-206-5800, or Dr. Craig Thurm, Director of Pulmonary Diseases at 718-206-7130, for more information.

All patients who participate in the study will have access to the services and programs available through Jamaica Hospital’s Division of Pulmonary Medicine. These include:
• a Pulmonary Function Lab that provides a wide range of testing options to patients with respiratory symptoms and lung disease.
• a multidisciplinary Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program for patients with breathing problems.
• a pulmonary support group for individuals with lung disease.

For additional information about the various services offered by the Division of Pulmonary Medicine, please call 718-206-7126.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.