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What is a Clinical Trial?

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Here’s another lesson from the Clubhouse classroom. According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, “clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans.

These studies also may show which medical approaches work best for certain illnesses or groups of people. Clinical trials produce the best data available for health care decision making.”

Before a clinical trial can be attempted on humans it has to go through various stages of approval. So it’s not like they are just going to start injecting people with something that has never been tested before; that’s some sick supervillain shenanigans! There are several benefits to participating in a clinical trial. If you are ill, this maybe the only way to receive a certain treatment or new medication. You’ll definitely want to consult your doctor before joining a clinical trial. If you are healthy, you may be helping to fine tune a treatment or protocol that will help others who are sick.

There could potentially be side effects from the medication or treatments. And I don’t mean superpowers. There could be things as minor as nausea or dizziness, however, there is the chance that some of the side effects could be quite severe. All of this will be explained prior to you signing on to the trial, what the study is, what the procedure will be, any medications involved and all the potential side effects. Be sure to check if there is a possibility to leave the trial early if the side effects become too intense for you to handle. And hey, medication might not even be a part of the clinical trial!

Depending on the type and length of the study, you can make hundreds or thousands of dollars. These trials can last weeks or months and you might have to report in for check ins or examinations. Be sure to weigh the potential pros and cons before agreeing to any clinical trial.

Stay tuned, Point Clubbers!

Source: “What Are Clinical Trials?” – NHLBI, NIH. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 June 2016.

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