Clinical trials are one of the most of the most important ways we have of developing effective new treatments and medications. Clinical trials are enormously expensive and time-consuming because of the importance of ensuring that any new treatment is safe and effective.. Clinical research organizations spend close to $150 billion a year on research and development, and only about 20% of all clinical trials end up successful. However, without these trials, most of the medications and treatments we depend on in modern medicine would not be available today. If you’re interested in knowing more about clinical research and CNS trials, here are some frequently asked questions and their answers.
What Are the Benefits of Taking Part?
Perhaps the most important is that you will be benefiting the cause of science, medicine, and research in an important way. From the Phase 1 trials through to the Phase 3 drug trial, all are crucial to medicine’s advancement. If you have an illness or condition already, taking part in a clinical trial can get you access to treatments before they are available to the general public. You also have access to this treatment while you are being closely monitored by competent research professionals and doctors who are invested in keeping you safe.
What Are the Risks?
All medical treatment of every kind involves some kind of risk. Even drugs and treatments that we have been using for years occasionally cause unexpected side effects. Specific to clinical trials, one of the risks is that the treatment simply will not work for you. Another possibility is that the treatment may cause a side effect, and because clinical trials involve brand-new treatments not all side effects are known going in. In fact, one of the important reasons for a Phase 3 drug trial in particular is to identify what side effects are possible in large groups of people.
What If I Get a Placebo?
Most people are well aware of what a placebo is, but placebos are not used as often as most people think. Much more commonly, a new treatment or medication is compared to existing effective treatments. Every trial is different, but you will be fully informed before you begin.
Am I Eligible For a Clinical Trial?
If you are interested in taking part in a Phase 3 drug trial or some other clinical research study, all the trials will have specific guidelines explaining who is eligible. Some will require a specific previous medical history, a particular gender, people of a certain age, or people with a particular medical condition at a certain stage of advancement. You will find out all of these details if you apply for more information about any clinical study.
What If I Want to Quit?
IThis is always your choice. You are free to leave clinical trials at any time and for any reason.
Can My Child Take Part in a Trial?
It is very important that any treatment intended for children be as safe as possible before being administered to any children. Typically, even in interventions designed to treat illnesses in children, the clinical trial Phase 1 will be for adult volunteers only. This is to determine whether the treatment is safe before children are involved. By the time a treatment reaches the Phase 2 clinical trial or Phase 3 drug trial stage, researchers will have a good idea of whether or not it is safe to recommend the trial treatment to children. Before a child is accepted, full disclosure and discussion with parents will take place.
What Is Informed Consent?
Whether you are taking part in the trial for yourself for considering it for a child, informed consent is necessary before you can take part. Informed consent means that you will be told exactly why the trial is happening, how long it will take, what will happen at each step, all potential risks, the potential benefits, and what will happen to your private medical records. Once you fully understand all this, you will be asked to sign your agreement to join the trial.
Clinical research studies are absolutely crucial to the advancement of modern medicine. Consider taking part in clinical trials near you and doing your part for research, science, and health.