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Wilmot Cancer Institute / Research / Clinical Trials / Risks & Benefits Of Clinical Trials

Risks & Benefits Of Clinical Trials

It is important to understand that clinical trials have risks and benefits. Doctors don’t know if the treatment being studied is better or worse than what is already available as standard care. In some cases, the treatment being evaluated may not be as effective as the best standard treatment, or it can have unexpected side effects. There are no guarantees — although clinical trials do not open until the treatment has underdone years of prior study and regulatory approval.

If the treatment is successful, patients in the clinical trial are the first to benefit. Patients also have the opportunity to help others in the future by contributing to research.