Treatments & Services

Benefits and Risks of Clinical Trials

Benefits of Participation in Clinical Trials

  • Patients receive quality care from VOA physicians and other health professionals who specialize in cancer care.
  • Patients have access to promising new therapies that doctors hope will be more effective and less toxic than the standard treatment. These therapies are not yet available to patients outside the study.
  • Patients can play an active role in your cancer care by expanding your treatment options.
  • Patients who participate in clinical trials receive first-rate medical care during the trial and throughout treatment. Their overall health is closely monitored.
  • By participating in clinical trials that can help bring new treatment to market, patients are contributing to the greater knowledge of cancer that may help other cancer patients in the future.

Potential Risks of Participation

  • Participants in randomized studies will not be able to choose the approach they receive.
  • Some health insurances or managed care plans may not cover all patient care costs in a study, in which case the patient would be responsible for these costs.
  • New treatment may have unknown side-effects or risks.
  • The treatment being studied may be less effective than the standard treatment for that cancer.

When making a decision to participate in a clinical trial, talk to your physician. Have all of your questions and concerns answered before choosing if taking part in a study is right for you.