Castleman disease (CD) is a rare disease of the lymph nodes and related tissues. Though CD is not officially a cancer, it behaves much like lymphoma. Multicentric Castleman disease clinical trials are focused on how to better detect and better treat this disease, so more patients have positive outcomes.
Multicentric Castleman disease clinical trials are responsible for all the current treatments for multicentric CD and are the only hope of developing new, more effective treatments with less side effects. CD is rare, so every chance to understand the disease’s process is important.
Symptoms and Treatment for Multicentric Castleman Disease
There are 2 types of Castleman disease. The first is called localized or unicentric CD (UCD). UCD only affects a single group of lymph nodes and can often be treated with surgery to remove the affected lymph nodes. On the other hand, multicentric Castleman disease (MCD) affects more than one group of lymph nodes and can even affect organs that contain lymphoid tissue. MCD is even more rare than UCD and is most common in patients diagnosed with HIV. Symptoms vary, but the most common symptoms of MCD are:
- Serious infections
- Unintended weight loss
- In severe cases, nerve damage
Treatment for MCD varies based on multiple factors such as the extent of the disease and comorbidities or other medical conditions, but includes immunotherapy, chemotherapy, corticosteroids, and even antiviral drugs.
Benefits of Multicentric Castleman Disease Clinical Trials
There are currently 5 active multicentric Castleman disease clinical trials in the United States. These trials are attempting to test innovative treatments that can increase the current 5-year survival rate of 65%. Some researchers also aim to create screening tools that could catch multicentric Castleman disease early when treatment is most effective. By participating in one of these trials, patients can access cutting edge therapies many years before the average population.