Last year in the UK over 60,000 cancer patients enrolled on clinical trials aimed at improving cancer treatments and making them available to all.
A trial looking at when to give blood transfusions for acute myeloid leukaemia (REAL)
Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.
More about this trial
Red blood cells contain haemoglobin which carries oxygen around your body. A drop in red blood cells can cause tiredness and breathlessness which can affect your
To find out if you need a
Researchers want to see if keeping your Hb level higher or lower makes any difference to how you feel and your general well being.
They also think that having more transfusions during chemotherapy for AML might make you feel better. But they don’t know for sure.
The best way to find this out is in a large
Who can enter
The following bullet points list the entry conditions for this study. Talk to your doctor or the study team if you are unsure about any of these. They will be able to advise you.
You may be able to join this study if all of the following apply. You
- Have acute myeloid leukaemia (AML)
- Are to have at least 2 cycles of intensive chemotherapy treatment
- Are at least 18 years old
You cannot join this study if any of these apply.
- You have acute promyelocytic leukaemia (AMPL)
- You have had a previous diagnosis of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) before AML
- Your haematology doctor doesn’t think the study is suitable for you because either giving you too many or not enough blood transfusions could be harmful
This is a feasibility study. The researchers need 36 people to join.
This is a randomised study. Everyone is put into 1 of 2 groups by a computer. Neither you or your doctor can choose which group you are in.
When you come in for a blood transfusion your doctor and nurses will know what your haemoglobin is and which group you are in. But they won’t be able to tell you. This is called a blind study.
During your first cycle of chemotherapy you have a blood transfusion if your haemoglobin is 70g/l or lower.
During your 2nd cycle of chemotherapy you have a blood transfusion if your haemoglobin is 90g/l or lower.
During your first cycle of chemotherapy you have a blood transfusion if your haemoglobin is 90g/l or lower.
During your 2nd cycle of chemotherapy you have a blood transfusion if your haemoglobin is 70g/l or lower.
Quality of life
You fill in a questionnaire:
- at the start of the study
- halfway through the 1st cycle of chemotherapy
- at the start of the 2nd cycle of chemotherapy
- halfway through the 2nd cycle of chemotherapy
- just before your 3rd cycle of chemotherapy
The questions are about how you feel and what you are able to do. This is called a quality of life questionnaire.
The team will take a blood sample before each blood transfusion you have. This is to check your level of haemoglobin. This is a routine procedure done before any transfusion.
You see the doctor or nurse for the study:
- on the day you agree to be in the study
- just before your 2nd cycle of chemotherapy
- just before the start of your 3rd cycle of chemotherapy
During these visits they will:
- do a physical examination
- check your blood test results
- look at your medical notes
- ask about any problems you might have
You might be a patient in the hospital when these visits are due. If not these will fit in with your routine clinic appointments.
There is a very small risk of getting an infection from the blood transfusion or having an allergic reaction.
Your doctor will talk to you about these risks before you agree to have a blood transfusion.
How to join a clinical trial
Dr Simon Stanworth
NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT)