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Why Participate in a Clinical Trial


Overview


By being part of a clinical trial, you can help move research forward.

Without clinical trials, there can be no better treatments, no prevention and no cure for Alzheimer's disease. Scientists work constantly to find better ways to treat diseases, but improved treatments can never become a reality without testing in clinical trials with human volunteers.

Today, at least 50,000 volunteers, both with and without Alzheimer's disease, are urgently needed to participate in more than 130 actively enrolling clinical trials about Alzheimer's and related dementias. Recruiting and retaining trial participants is now the greatest obstacle, other than funding, to developing the next generation of Alzheimer's treatments.

We need people like you to help to change the course of this disease and improve the lives of all those it affects. Get started with Alzheimer’s Association TrialMatch®, a free, easy-to-use clinical studies matching service that connects individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, caregivers, healthy volunteers and physicians with current studies.

Benefits of clinical trials


Participating in clinical trial has the potential to help both the individual participant and other individuals who have Alzheimer's or are at risk of developing it.

  • You can play a more active role in your own health care.
  • You can gain access to potential treatments before they are widely available.
  • You can receive expert medical care at leading healthcare facilities — often free of cost — while participating in important medical research.
  • You can help future generations — your children and grandchildren — by contributing to Alzheimer's research.

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Risks of participation


Patient safety is the most important aspect of every Alzheimer's disease clinical trial. The procedures for each study are reviewed by an expert committee not directly involved in the trial. This helps ensure that patient safety is protected.

There are risks, however, to clinical trials:

  • There may be unpleasant or even serious side effects related to the potential treatments(s) being studied.
  • The experimental treatment may not be effective.

Details of risks related to participation in the clinical study are spelled out in the consent form participants (or their proxies) sign when they agree to participate.

Reasons for optimism


No new treatment advances to the clinical testing phase unless there is strong evidence indicating it will be as effective as, or more effective than, currently available therapies.

Every clinical trial contributes valuable knowledge, whether or not the treatment works as hoped.

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Participants receive a high standard of care


All participants receive regular care related to the trial and opportunities to talk to clinical trial staff. Research shows that people involved in clinical trials tend to do somewhat better than people in a similar stage of their disease who are not enrolled in clinical trials, regardless of whether the experimental treatment works. Scientists believe this advantage may be due to the general high quality of care provided during clinical trials.

Get started today by registering with Alzheimer’s Association TrialMatch®, a free, easy-to-use clinical studies matching service that connects you with current studies.