Frequently Asked Questions

What is a research study?
Due to the dangerous nature of many new medical methods and treatments, they must be put through rigourous testing before becoming available to the public. Once these treatments are deemed safe enough to be tested on humans, these methods are put through clinical research studies or clinical trials. Clinical research studies are a series of studies, broken up into four phases, performed in order to study the outcomes and effectiveness of these experimental treatments in humans.
What is a clinical trial phase?
Clinical trials are progressed through a total of four different phases. Each phase has a different purpose and helps researchers determine the effectiveness of each treatment.

You can read more about this on the Clinical Trial Phases page.
Who is eligible for a clinical trial or research study?
Each research study's eligibility criteria is different. While some studies allow healthy volunteers, many studies have very strict guidlines for who can enter a trial. Most times, study investigators recruit patients with specific characteristics such as age, height, weight, or pre-existing condition. You can view each study's eligibility criteria by going to the reasearch study's page and navigating to the "Eligibility" section.
How long do research studies last?
The length of a research study is determined by the type of treatment that is involved. Some studies end in less than a year whereas others can last serveral years!
Where are research studies held?
Clinical research studies and trials are held in facilities around the world and are usually operated and fully staffed by contract research organizations (CRO's).
Are you a governmental website?
No we are not related in any way to the U.S.government or its institutions. However, the information provided on this website is frequently updated using data provided by the U.S. National Institute of Health through its website
What is a placebo?
A placebo is an inactive drug or treatment intended to deceive the patient in order to establish a control group. Interestingly, sometimes patients given a placebo show signs of improvement. This is commonly known as the placebo effect.
What is a control group?
A control group is typically a group of patients given a placebo in order to establish a baseline health standard for which the experimental groups can be measured against.