Getting Started with Clinical Research and Clinical Trials

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It’s amazing how far science has brought the society today. From simple things like new gadgets to more important innovations like live-saving devices, the world has evolved quite impressively. However, the one of the most notable advances would be the field of medicine. With the growing number of health issues and diseases that face the society today, clinical research is one something that forges the industry forward.

Scientists, chemists and other medical practitioners who try to solve budding health issues by coming up with new medicines, treatment options and medical devices are always a comfort to know. And yet, amidst all their hard work, people often overlook the process by which these medical innovations are produced.

What is Clinical Research? What is its Difference with Clinical Trials?

Clinical research is a branch in medical science that helps determine the safety and effectiveness of any medical product—be it medications, devices or treatment methods. Before any new product or technique is released to the market or employed in healthcare, an in-depth research is first performed.

Notably, this process is different from Clinical Trials. In researches,a researcher—a Scientist or medical practitioner like you—has yet to find out something new. According to the NYU Lang one Medical Center, investigators don’t have a preconceived idea as to what will work best for their specimens and so they try to add to their general knowledge by conducting researches.

It also involves non-medical healthcare departments like Psychology, Business Anthropology and Sociology.

On the other hand, clinical trials are a form of research in that investigators are trying to test a specific drug, medical device or treatment on specimens with a goal to answer a specific health question. These trials are performed in scientifically controlled environments and are required to follow regulations and protocols.

Clinical trials confirm whether a new medical innovation is safe and effective to be used.

Why is Clinical Trial important?

When researchers are conducting their studies in laboratories, there are items that are often overlooked. Through clinical trials, these researchers are able to answer issues that are otherwise forgotten in researches.

According to Australian Clinical Trials, these include:

  • What is the exact question this clinical trial is intended to answer?
  • What is the primary outcome variable? Is this readily measured?
  • Is it a direct measure of outcome or do you intend to rely on surrogate endpoints?
  • Are these outcomes those specified by guidance documents as the preferred measures for the outcome of interest?
  • Is the trial design appropriate?
  • Are subject numbers or event numbers sufficient to give adequate statistical power to detect a difference in treatments should one exist, or demonstrate non-inferiority?
  • Have you considered the ongoing treatment of trial subjects should they respond to the unapproved medical product under investigation?

By including these questions through a comprehensive clinical trial, researchers are able to conduct a more inclusive and far-reaching conclusion to their researches. And a complete and precise research means a better medical industry and a better life for the community.

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Ethan Ryan has 16 articles online

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Getting Started with Clinical Research and Clinical Trials

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This article was published on 2013/07/01