What is a clinical trial?
A clinical trial uses human participants for the purpose of gaining medical knowledge about specific diseases or conditions in order to find a safe and effective treatment. Researchers are able to work directly with patients living with the conditions they are trying to treat. A wealth of information has been obtained from clinical trials, allowing researchers to find breakthrough treatments and solutions to help many patients across the globe.
Is a clinical trial right for me?
You should always talk to your doctor before agreeing to participate in a clinical trial. A healthcare professional should be able to properly advise you in your participation, but only you will be able to make the final decision on whether a clinical trial is the right decision for you.
If you have not had success with available options for treating your specific condition, you may want to consider looking into a clinical trial. Many participants have had success with trials where other options have failed. Talk with your doctor about available studies or search our site for clinical trials working toward a solution for you condition.
Are there risks involved in participating in a clinical trial?
It is important to note that any clinical trial, as with any medical care, will involve some amount of risk. A risk/benefit analysis will be provided to you prior to your participation. Be sure to bring any questions or concerns you may have to your research coordinator or health care provider.
How does clinical trial research make a difference?
Clinical trial research has made a difference in the lives of many people living with chronic and life-altering conditions and diseases. The information learned from previous studies paved the way for innovations and treatments that are commonly used today. As new trials continue to emerge, we are excited about the opportunities they present to further the science of healing. Researchers and volunteers like you are working every day to change and develop treatments of the future.
How long do clinical trial studies last?
Clinical trial durations vary greatly depending on the drug or device being studied. Some trials last for only 1 visit, while others can be ongoing for years. This information will be provided to you before your participation begins.
What questions should I ask if I am interested in participating in a research study?
It is important to gather as much information as possible before beginning a clinical trial. Here are a few questions you can ask your health care provider to get you stated:
- What is the purpose of this study?
- What results have been reported in this study so far?
- What tests/procedures are involved?
- How often will I have to visit the hospital or clinic?
- How long will the study last?
- What are the potential risks/benefits I can expect?
- Could my participation in this study affect my daily life?
- What are the possible treatment options I will receive during this study? What is the chance I will receive a placebo?
- What are my options if I am injured during the study?
- Who is funding the study?
- Who has reviewed and approved this study?
- What other options do I have?
What if I change my mind?
Your participation in a clinical trial is completely voluntary and you may withdraw at any time. It is important to talk to the researcher if you decide to leave a trial, as they will be able to safely decrease any drug dosages or procedures. Remember, your safety and well-being always come first.