What to Expect from Joining a Clinical Trial

When participating in a clinical trial as a patient, there are several aspects you can expect.
It’s important to note that each clinical trial may have unique requirements and procedures, so the specific details may vary.
However, here are some general expectations for patients participating in clinical trials:

Before joining a clinical trial, you will go through the informed consent process. This involves receiving detailed information about the trial, including its purpose, potential risks and benefits, procedures involved, and your rights as a participant. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and fully understand what participation entails. Signing the informed consent form is voluntary, and you have the right to withdraw from the trial at any time.


To ensure the trial’s objectives are met and participant safety is maintained, you will undergo a screening process. This typically involves a series of assessments, including medical history review, physical examinations, laboratory tests, and sometimes imaging scans. These evaluations help determine if you meet the specific eligibility criteria for the trial, which may include factors such as age, medical condition, previous treatments, and overall health.


If you qualify for the clinical trial and choose to participate, you will receive the investigational treatment or intervention being studied. This may involve a new drug, medical device, procedure, behavioral intervention, or a combination of treatments. In some cases, you may be assigned to a control group receiving a placebo or standard treatment for comparison purposes. The specific details of the treatment plan, including dosages, frequency, and duration, will be explained to you by the research team.


Throughout the trial, you will be closely monitored by the research team. This may include regular visits to the study site or interactions via telemedicine, depending on the trial design. The team will assess your progress, monitor any potential side effects, and evaluate the treatment’s effectiveness. You may need to undergo additional tests, procedures, or imaging scans during the trial to gather data and track your response to the intervention.


To ensure the integrity and validity of the clinical trial results, it is important to follow the study protocol diligently. This includes adhering to the treatment schedule, taking medications as prescribed, attending scheduled appointments, and reporting any changes in your health or potential side effects to the research team. It’s crucial to communicate openly with the research staff and notify them of any concerns or questions that arise during the trial.


Your safety and well-being are of utmost importance throughout the clinical trial. The research team will have safety measures in place to monitor and manage any potential risks or adverse events. They will provide guidance on how to handle emergency situations and offer support throughout the trial duration. It’s essential to promptly report any unexpected changes in your health or any adverse reactions you experience during the trial.


You can expect ongoing communication with the research team during the trial. They will provide updates on the trial progress, address any concerns or questions you may have, and ensure that you remain informed about your participation. Additionally, they will inform you about any changes to the study procedures, interventions, or potential risks as they arise.

Participating in a clinical trial can offer the opportunity to access innovative treatments, contribute to medical knowledge, and potentially benefit from advancements in healthcare.


It’s important to maintain open communication with the research team, follow the protocol guidelines, and advocate for your well-being throughout the trial.