Frequently Asked Questions About Clinical Trials in Neurosurgery and Brain Repair
Clinical trials are scientific tests that meet the rigorous standards of national governing boards such as the Federal Drug Administration (FDA). Before any new treatment or medication is made available to the public, scientists conduct tests to determine the benefits, side-effects, limitations and other relevant information that providers or patients should know.
Clinical trials usually include participants with a specific medical concern that is related to the drug or treatment being proposed. At the USF Neuroscience Institute, some patients with a brain or spine concern are eligible to volunteer for a one of our clinical trials. For information on clinical trials, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov.
There are some benefits for individuals who participate in drug or device studies:
- Discovery: Participants may have the opportunity to try a medication or device that is not otherwise available to the public.
- Intensive: Participants often receive the additional evaluations and follow-ups that may be more thorough and more frequent than what you typically receive from your provider.
- Expertise: Participants usually enjoy contact with highly specialized clinicians who know the most current information related to their condition.
To determine if you are eligible for any current clinical trials, please consult one of our institute physicians (your primary care doctor will likely not be up-to-date on this information). Alternatively, you may call one of our clinical trial team members and discuss studies that are currently enrolling based on the participant's diagnosis and current condition.
A placebo is a substance that is made to look exactly like the study medication, but has no actual effect. Placebos help us determine if no drug is better or worse than using the proposed new treatment.