Learning the Truth About Clinical Trials

There are currently over 60,000 clinical trials occurring in the United States. These programs not only allow patients to access potentially ground-breaking new therapies, but also help researchers collect valuable data.

Many patients have concerns about the risk involved, despite the importance of clinical trials in the drug development process. Common misperceptions can deter patients from seeking out new approaches to treatment that can currently only be found in clinical trials.

The Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota addresses the following myths about clinical trials in a series of short videos:

“Patients enrolled in clinical trials are treated like guinea pigs.”
“Never enroll into a clinical trial, they cost too much.”
“Signing up for a clinical trial means you give up all your patient rights.”
“Clinical trials are risky, especially for minorities.”
“Clinical trials are only good if you live near a major city.”

You can also find answers to common questions about clinical trials on this FAQ page from the Association of Clinical Research Organizations.

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One Response to Learning the Truth About Clinical Trials

  1. Debra H says:

    In an effort to further educate your readers, I would like to offer other suggestions for complete and balanced information about clinical trials participation including searches, process, protection, benefits and risks. Here are some helpful resources (websites and book):

    1) http://www.CISCRP.org (Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation)
    This non-profit organization is focused on educating and informing the public about clinical research participation. CISCRP provides valuable information including how volunteers can protect themselves.

    CISCRP tries to help you locate ongoing clinical trials by supporting SearchClinicalTrials.org. CISCRP also helps those patients who are having difficulty locating clinical trials by conducting a custom search for them.

    2) The Gift of Participation: A Guide to Making Informed Decisions About Volunteering for a Clinical Trial (author: Kenneth Getz) – available on the CISCRP website.

    3) And for specific trial listings and news about Clinical Trials, your readers should go to the website: http://www.CenterWatch.com There, they can search for clinical trials in their area or around the world, and they will find listings of clinical trials organized by medical condition, therapeutic area and location.

    My goal is to help people feel empowered and protected as they participate in the Clinical Trials process. I hope you find these suggestions helpful.

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