Clinical trials are an integral part of drug development and are required before a medicine can be approved for prescription use. Read below to learn more about clinical trial basics and the various stages of clinical testing.
Clinical Trials 101
Clinical trials are voluntary studies conducted in people to answer very specific research questions. Clinical trials can study the safety and effectiveness of new drugs or procedures, can assess new ways of using existing treatments, or clinical trials can be designed to learn more about how a disease progresses over time (e.g. a natural history study). It is through clinical trials that we learn about new drugs, and ultimately, how new therapies become approved and available to patients.
Its important to know that clinical trials are not treatments; they are research studies. By participating in a clinical trial, you are not assured that a drug will make your symptoms better or will stop the progression of a disease. You may even be given a placebo in a clinical trial and receive no therapeutic benefit. It’s also important to know that many drugs have unwanted side effects that can range from being mild to very serious or life-threatening. However, by participating in a clinical trial, you are directly contributing to the research community by helping to assess the safety and effectiveness of new drugs for FOP and answering important scientific questions.
Ultimately, the decision to participate in clinical trials is yours. Participating in trials is always voluntary and you can withdraw from a clinical trial at any point.