Clinical Trials Part 1 – Types of Clinical Trials
This 4-part series explains what clinical trials are, how they’re run, what all the unfamiliar terminology means, and why people choose to participate in trials. We also include helpful resources to learn more.
Clinical trials are how new treatments, therapies, and procedures for diseases and conditions get into market so people can use them. They’re meant to show what’s safe, what works, and what doesn’t in humans – key information that can’t always be learned in the lab or with animal models. The paramount focus in all of this, naturally, is the safety of clinical trial participants. In the United States, health authorities such as ethics committees (called Institutional Review Boards, or IRBs) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulate clinical trials. Most every country has its own counterpart.
There are different types of clinical trials, depending on what researchers want to study. Each one is crucial in modern, evidence-based medicine in finding new treatments that could help improve a person’s health.
In the next installment, we’ll explain what all words used to describe clinical trials/studies mean. It’s really not as complicated as you might think, and provides good insight into how the study you’re reading about was, or will be conducted.