Who is Eligible for Participation in a Dermatology Clinical Trial?
Participating in a dermatology clinical trial isn’t as easy as just volunteering. Perhaps you have eczema, acne, or another skin condition, and you’ve learned about a clinical trial for that condition. Volunteering is only the first step in the process.
“Each clinical trial requires that you first qualify by meeting certain parameters within the trial’s “inclusion criteria”, which allows a person to participate,” says Dr. Ted Lain, board certified Dermatologist at Sanova Dermatology in Austin, Texas. At the same time, you can be disqualified by certain conditions and factors known as “exclusion criteria”. These criteria can include things like age, gender, certain medical conditions, etc. It’s important to realize that screening participants serves several purposes …
- They’re designed to ensure your safety as a potential participant.
- They’re contingent upon what researchers hope to learn from the trial.
- They’re meant to identify appropriate participants. (For example, you may not be qualified to participate in a dermatology trial for moderate to severe acne if you only suffer from an occasional breakout.)
“It’s also important to realize that participation in a trial doesn’t guarantee that you’ll find relief from the condition being studied,” states Dr. Lain. In fact, most studies will include a group that gets a medication while another group receives a placebo instead, and nobody in either group will know which they’ve received!
If you’re lucky, you might be in the group that gets the actual medication or treatment being researched, and garner good results. But that is never guaranteed. The real value in participating in a dermatology — or any other clinical trial for that matter — is in helping researchers find new treatments and medicine that may help others who suffer from a particular skin condition. “In other words, you’re able to be a part of scientific advancements, which is its own reward! But don’t worry, qualified participants will be compensated for their time and travel, receive free medical care, and no insurance is required to participate,” explains Dr. Lain. So…the benefits of participating in a clinical trial are numerous!
If you have a problem that needs the attention of a qualified dermatologist, contact us at Sanova Dermatology. Are you interested in participating in a dermatology clinical trial? Visit the Austin Institute for Clinical Research website or call 512-279-2545.