What to Know About Clinical Trials

patient on clinical trial

Most people usually see the words clinical trials but do not know what it entails. These trials consist of research studies which explore whether treatments, devices, and strategies are safe for use in humans. They are also used to see what form of medication and treatment will work best with a given illness.

Although clinical trials can be conducted for certain equipment, most of them are done to test new drugs or medications for specific conditions. These trials are offered as clinical research. Here are some things to know about clinical trials.

Medications Used are not Proven Yet

drugsYou should understand that the medication used in clinical trials have not been proven to work or to be safe. It is different from going to the doctor and getting a prescription for a given treatment which has been tested and found effective and safe. It is vital that you are clear on this. Drugs used in clinical trials have already undergone extensive testing but not on human beings.


You need to have a given condition or illness to be eligible for clinical trials. For some trials, it is essential to have had no treatment for the condition at all, or you may have been treated with specific medications. You do not even need to have a medical condition for some trials since medications are tested on healthy people. Some of the trials may also have to be discriminatory. This implies that participants can be selected based on occupation, se, race, age, and other identifying factors.

They are Voluntary

volunteer for clinical trialMost of the trials are done on a volunteer basis, and there is no payment offered. However, in most clinical trials, the cost of medication being used is usually covered. It is essential to understand that in some of them a placebo may be used along with the medication being tested. This implies you can be receiving no treatment even though you think you are.

You need to first talk to your doctor to know about the clinical trials available. You can also check on your local dailies to know if there are any clinical trials available. It is important, however, to note that need not volunteer for a trial before discussing with your doctor first. Also, you need to realize that the fact that you are volunteering is not an indication that you will be chosen for the trials.