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Taking the Hospital Home – New Lung Cancer Research

Posted on July 2, 2021 in Blog

This content was written by Shelly Abrams, RN, BSN, Clinical Research Coordinator

Can Mobile Devices Identify Post-Treatment Problems Early?

ON TRAX – Evaluating a mobile technology monitoring device used in patients with inoperable Stage 3 Lung Cancer 


Shelly Abrams, RN, BSN
Shelly Abrams, RN, BSN, Clinical Research Coordinator

Lung cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer deaths in men and women worldwide.  People who smoke have the greatest risk of developing lung cancer. The risk increases with the length of time and number of cigarettes smoked over a course of time.  Less commonly, lung cancer can occur in people who have never smoked. Risk factors for nonsmokers developing lung cancer can include exposure to secondhand smoke, previous radiation therapy, exposure to radon gas, asbestos, and other carcinogens, and a family history of lung cancer.

At Thompson Cancer Survival Center, we treat a diverse population of patients including those with various stages of lung cancer. Unfortunately, there is no current cure for most stage 3 lung cancers. Thankfully with clinical trials and evolving new research, survival rates and quality of care options for these patients are constantly improving. Our Clinical Research department has over 20 studies currently open targeting different kinds of cancer. A few of our trials include studies focusing on Breast, Prostate, Melanoma, Lung, and Colorectal Cancers.  

Early Detection Matters

Traditionally, patients with stage 3 lung cancers are at increased risk to develop negative reactions to their treatments or have disease progression. The more common and serious side effects may include inflammation or changes in the lungs. When these problems are not found early, managing the side effect and helping the patient stay on his or her cancer treatment becomes more difficult. For patients outside the hospital setting, identifying these problems when they begin is challenging. Researchers are looking for new ways to monitor patients and detect early signs of these potential side effects, including pneumonitis.

Moving Forward with Research

Thompson is participating in a recently opened pilot study that includes patients with Stage 3 inoperable lung cancer. The “ONTRAX” study is evaluating the impact of allowing patients to use a mobile device to monitor and detect early signs of pulmonary or lung adverse events. Patients can wear this device any place and all the time, 24/7.  This wearable mobile device monitors the patient’s vital signs, respiratory function, and physical movement all within the comfort of their own home without affecting their daily lifestyle or confining them to a hospital or treatment setting. By detecting these side effects early, patients may reach optimal treatment for their symptoms allowing them to stay on their cancer treatment longer. Data collected in this specific study is helping to find better outcomes and improved care for people with this type of lung cancer.

Cutting Edge

We at Thompson Cancer Survival Center are excited to take part in this cutting-edge research and the design that the Current Health ONTRAX device offers. This mobile device uses an FDA-approved technology called Current Wearable Health Monitoring System.  During this 12 month study, the patient will wear this device while being monitored and tracked daily by medical professionals.  For these patients, the ultimate goal is to achieve a better quality of life for as long as possible.

We are currently enrolling patients who meet specific criteria and are considered eligible by the definitions in the study.  For more information: Thompson Cancer Survival Center Clinical Trials: (865) 331-1812



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U.S. National Library of Medicine –

American Cancer Society.