What is a clinical trial?
A clinical trial helps researchers to understand if a new drug, a new combination of drugs, surgical procedure, medical device, diagnostic method, prevention method or other treatment is effective for a specific health condition, and is safe to use.
Why are clinical trials important?
What does it mean to volunteer in a clinical trial?
What is expected of me when I participate in a clinical trial?
Where do I find clinical trials?
You can find clinical trials directly via www.clinicaltrials.gov, but you can also sign up with Citruslabs and we automatically match you with a clinical trial in your area that fits your needs.
What are the different steps involved to participate in a clinical trial? What are the different types of clinical trials?
Once you passed the screening, the site will invite you to join the clinical trial and needs you to sign an informed consent form to do this. The informed consent form gives you all the information about the purpose of the clinical trial, benefits and potential risks, and helps you to better understand what to expect when you participate in this specific trial.
What are the benefits of participating in a clinical trial? What are the risks of participating in a clinical trial?
Benefits and risks differ from trial to trial and you should always talk to the research team before you decide to participate in a clinical trial to fully understand specific benefits and risks.
What is a protocol?
A protocol is a central information source and describes the rules of the clinical trial. First, it states why a specific question is researched and how the research team will answer the question; second, it includes information on the specific procedures, which medications will be used (if any), which data analysis methods will be used, possible benefits and risks and possible adverse events, and third, it also tells you who can and cannot participate. A protocol also tells you how the research team will protect the health and wellbeing of the participants.
What is a placebo?
Usually, only blinded trials use a placebo, which is an inactive drug or treatment, sometimes also referred to as a “sugar pill”. If you take the placebo, you are in the control group and the goal behind that is to see how the researched drug or treatment compares to the placebo.
What is informed consent?
If you’re thinking of taking part in a clinical trial, you will likely come across an informed consent form. The informed consent form gives you all the information about the purpose of the clinical trial, benefits and potential risks, which procedures are involved in the trial, your rights and that taking part in research is absolutely your choice. It will help you to better understand what to expect when you participate in this specific trial.
What happens during a phone and on-site screening?
How long does a clinical trial last?
How long a clinical trial lasts depends on the protocol. It usually lasts from six months to 24 months, but can also last shorter or longer. We encourage you to ask this question to the research staff.
Do I get paid to participate in a clinical trial?
Usually, participants in a clinical trial get reimbursed for their travel expenses and time.
Do I have to pay something to participate in a clinical trial?
In some cases, taking part in a clinical trial will not cost you or your insurance company anything. Especially for people in the US, this is good news! However, other studies may bill your insurance company for drugs, the services they provide or the devices that they may hand out to you. There is the possibility that your insurance company may not pay for some or all of the charges and you may receive a bill by the researchers for this. Due to this, it is very important that you look carefully at the informed consent form which will describe any costs to you in great detail. If the information is not clear to you, you should definitely ask a research team to explain the costs to you before you agree to participate in the trial and sign the consent form.
How is the safety of a clinical trial participant protected?
Can I still see my primary care provider?
Clinical trials should be seen as short-term care. Hence, you will in most cases continue to see your primary care provider (pcp), also during your participation in a clinical trial. Your pcp may have even referred you to a clinical trial.
Can I change my mind when I participate in a clinical trial and drop out?
Participating in a clinical trial is 100% your own choice and you should not be forced to participate in a clinical trial. You can also drop out during a clinical trial at any time and should not be forced to continue with the trial if you don’t want to.