Individualizing your cancer treatment through genetics.

Patient FAQ

The PCDx test offers a more personalized approach to cancer treatment by identifying the genetic components of a patient’s tumor. We’ve provided answers to the most common questions from patients about PCDx to get you started.

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Patient FAQ Brochure

Paradigm Patient FAQ 3.16.2016


Why are genetic alterations important for guiding cancer therapy?

Genetic alterations are changes in the tumor’s DNA that can impact the way that specific cells and cancers behave. Most genomic changes are part of our normal biology, and do not have a negative impact, but some can lead to cancer. While cancers are typically caused by alterations within a few hundred very specific genes, only a sub-set of those genes are classified as “actionable” or associated with a drug therapy. Research has shown that using therapies that “target” these actionable gene alterations can lead to better patient outcomes with fewer side effects.


What is Paradigm’s PCDx test?

The PCDx test is a custom sequencing based diagnostic genetic test that offers a more targeted, personalized approach to cancer treatment by interrogating and identifying the underlying genetic alterations of your tumor’s DNA. The information provided by this test assists your treating physician in developing a more informed and individually tailored treatment strategy for your cancer.


Am I appropriate for Paradigm’s PCDx testing?

The Paradigm PCDx test is typically utilized for patients when first-line or second-line treatment or standard of care options are not working. This is typically referred to as “refractory” disease. PCDx is also appropriate if your cancer is rare or of an aggressive nature with limited treatment options. Ultimately, however, it is up to both you and your treating clinician as to whether PCDx testing may be appropriate for your specific clinical situation.


How will this genetic information help guide my treatment?

The results of your testing will be forwarded to your treating clinician in the form of a clinical report, which will outline the following: the testing performed, the genomic alterations that were identified, and information on any potential treatment strategies, including clinical trials that could be of benefit based on your tumor’s analysis. Your physician may then incorporate this data as they develop your individualized treatment strategy.


What will the PCDx report indicate?

The PCDx report highlights therapies (both FDA approved and investigational) that may be potentially effective based upon the genetic alterations identified in your tumor. Additionally, the service will provide information on clinical trials that may be available to you for participation. Furthermore, each individual report is reviewed and commented on by an experienced oncologist and pathologist in a fashion intended to clarify the results for the ordering physician to aid in their decision making.


When can I expect my results?

At Paradigm, we understand that time is a precious commodity to you and your family. If both you and your treating physician determine that PCDx may be of assistance, they will place an order for the test. We will work closely with your physician to obtain a biopsy sample for testing. Once your sample is received, your results should be available within 4-5 business days.


What type of sample is required?

The Paradigm PCDx test can be performed on a piece of tissue obtained during an earlier biopsy or surgical resection. If there is not enough tissue remaining from the previous biopsy to run the service, an additional biopsy may be required. When possible, we recommend performing testing on the most recent tumor or disease recurrence.


Where is the testing performed?

The Paradigm PCDx test is performed in our CLIA certified laboratory in Phoenix, AZ to ensure the highest standards of laboratory practice. Furthermore, each individual report is reviewed and commented on by an experienced oncologist and pathologist in a fashion intended to clarify the results for the ordering physician to aid in their decision making. If you have any questions, please call us at 844-232.4719.


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