If you are considering enrolling in a clinical trial, you should gather as much information as you can about it before you make your decision. The National Cancer Institute has compiled a list of questions that patients may want to ask their own doctors or the clinical trial staff.

About the study:

  • What is the purpose of the study? In what phase is the study?
  • Why do researchers believe the new treatment being tested may be effective? Has it been tested before?
  • Who sponsors the study, and who has reviewed and approved it?
  • How are the study data and patient safety being checked?
  • When and where will study results and information go?

About possible risks and benefits:

  • What are the possible short- and long-term risks, side effects, and benefits to me?
  • Are there standard treatments for my type of cancer?
  • How do the possible risks, side effects, and benefits in the study compare with standard treatment?

About your care:

  • What kinds of treatments, medical tests, or procedures will I have during the study? Will they be painful? How do they compare with what I would receive outside the study?
  • How often and for how long will I receive the treatment, and how long will I need to remain in the study? Will there be follow-up after the study?
  • Where will my treatment take place? Will I have to be in the hospital? If so, how often and for how long?
  • How will I know if the treatment is working?
  • Will I be able to see my own doctor? Who will be in charge of my care?

About personal issues:

  • How could the study affect my daily life?
  • Can you put me in touch with other people who are in this study?
  • What support is there for me and my family in the community?

About costs:

  • Will I have to pay for any treatment, tests, or other charges?
  • What is my health insurance likely to cover?
  • Who can help answer any questions from my insurance company or managed care plan?

Find a Clinical Trial

To find a clinical trial, search our clinical trials database by study number, investigator or by topic (keyword).