The advantages and disadvantages of taking part in clinical trials

If you are thinking about joining a clinical trial as a participant, there are a few things that must make yourself aware of before you sign up. Volunteering for a clinical trial may be worthwhile if the medical product or treatment being tested could potentially treat your present health condition. However, not all volunteers are classified as patient volunteers. In fact, many participants are completely healthy and this is okay too, because it allows the trial team to test their treatment and learn what effects it would have on a healthy body, rather than someone suffering from a medical illness. The trials provide sensitive information to medical professionals that will ultimately help others with pre-existing conditions, so confidentiality is key and many steps are taken to ensure anonymity where possible. This may include the use of a Visitor Management System, like the ones you can see at as well as the safe removal of confidential information and reports.

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If you are struggling to make up your mind about whether or not to join a clinical trial, have a look at the following advantages and disadvantages to give you a clearer idea of what you will be getting yourself into:

Advantages of Clinical Trial Participation

One of the most obvious advantages of volunteering to be a part of a clinical trial is the fact that you will be able to find out if the new treatment is better than an existing treatment.

Because you are involved in an intricate study, your own treatment and individual progress is likely to be monitored more closely. This means having more focused attention from health professionals than if you were simply receiving the same old treatment as other patients.

Since you are a part of a clinical trial, you will come into contact with a team of healthcare professionals and doctors.

Once the clinical trial has ended, you are likely to receive further aftercare treatment. On top of this, you will also be offered the best and most effective course of treatment.

Disadvantages of Clinical Trial Contribution

The uncertainty surrounding clinical trials is perhaps where the biggest problem lies. You will not know what to expect and you cannot be sure of the final outcome, according to the NHS.

The new treatment may be ineffective, although you will  be helping medical professionals to identify this so that they are able to remove these particular drugs from their list

The possibility of experiencing side effects can be high, depending on the drugs that you will be trialling.

You may be required to re-visit the clinic for additional treatments and tests. Constant moderation may also be irritating to participants who were not expecting such a high degree of monitoring.


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