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Cholesterol Support
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Clinical trials?

Looking for members views on clinical trials, advantages or disadvantages?

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Hello,

Thank you, there are a lot of information. Have given blood for testing for cholesterol and blood sugar, depending on the blood test results I may be invited to take part. At the moment I do not know much more, my intention on this is to take part as a learning exercise on medication on clinical trials.

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Who is looking for our views Bala? Just for yourself? The only way to discover how different drugs work on human beings is for a large, random group of human beings to be tested with them. That is my view (for what its worth.)

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Hello,

Yesterday I went for blood test, blood collected for cholesterol and blood sugar testing. The location is not far from me therefore no problem getting there. Depending up on blood test results I may or may not be called upon. I am trying this to learn more on clinical trials to get a better understanding on drugs trials. Looking for members views just for myself, any feed back from the drug trail may help members!

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Many people complain that the advice given on diet/health/medications etcetera change from year to year. Without trials on living human beings, no-one would know how effective (or not) drugs are so you can be proud of yourself, if you go ahead, to know that you have helped with some research to help others. I would say, "Go for it!"

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The advantage is it may have some benefit. The disadvantage is it may be harmful. Given the recent debate over statins, where the MHRA said that 450 in 10,000 having five years of treatment may benefit from a decreased risk of heart attack, stroke or death (implying 95.5% will not benefit), I'll pass thank you. When you see the claims and counter-claims of pharmaceutical companies and their dissenters, who can you trust to give you an informed decision of the risks you are getting into? Even then, people often don't assess risk very well based on statistics.

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All,

Thank you for your response.

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Hi Bala,

I don't know a lot about drugs trials, but I do know that they are sometimes pretty specific about the sort of people they want. Also, just from general reading, some people are excluded after the initial "rounds". I often see adverts for volunteers in the London "Evening Standard" and they tend to be very specific about age, gender, smoker or non smoker etc. But good luck to you, you may well fit their criteria. Let us know how you get on.

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Drug clinical trials are not usually run by pharmaceutical companies themselves but by independent government or research organisations. For example, the one I am participating in is run by Oxford University. Of course the University and staff have to be paid but the research protocol will ensure that the tests and results aren't biased.

Most trials do look for people with specific physical and medical characteristics - particularly in Phase III trials there wouldn't be much point in testing on people that weren't suffering from the diseases/symptoms that were related to the target use of the drug.

If you experience unpleasant side effects you can drop out. The biggest 'risk' is that because of the necessary randomised nature of the trial, you have a 50% chance of receiving the placebo rather than the test drug and therefore you might not benefit from the drug's desirable effects. By the way, during the life of the trial, no one - not even doctors, nurses or pharmacists - knows whether you are on drug or placebo.

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