From Lab Test to Drug Stores: Testing the Efficacy of New Drugs

medicineBefore a certain drug, pill, medical device, or any other type of treatment becomes available to the public, it must be tested first to prove its safety. This test, also known as clinical trial, is designed to test the efficacy of the new dug compared to the current standard treatment.

These tests provide critical information on the effectiveness of the treatment or diagnostic test. A paid medical trial also evaluates a new combination of existing treatment, or a new approach to therapy or surgery.

The Pre-clinical Test

When chemists, scientists, and other medical personnel come up with a new drug that has medical potential, it is tested on animals. The test will look for signs of risks such as poisoning and other disease or defects it may cause. These studies are also used to know the initial drug dose safe for humans.

Phase I

The first test of a drug will determine if a drug is safe for humans. This is performed to learn what drug dose to use in later trials, how the drug is broken down in the body, and its short-term side effects. This step rarely has few participants. Often, healthy people participate in this phase. In some cases, however, medical trials allow patients who have failed standard treatments to participate.

Phase II

When the drug passes the safety tests, it advances to phase II, which involves more participants. The aim of this step is to learn further about the safety and side effects on the participants. This is also helpful to sharpen the estimated dose to get an appraisal if the drug is going to work. This is the time when a drug is tested on actual patients.

Phase III

This phase involves hundreds or even thousands of participants. This is conducted at several medical centres to determine if people in different centres have the same experiences. The goal of this phase is to know whether the actual drug works. This phase will give doctors an extended look at the drug or treatment’s side effects. There are different ways of conducting a phase III trial.

Phase IV

Phase IV involves additional studies released in the market. These will be used to collect data on the effect on a particular population on long-term usage. Research will note additional side effects, benefits, and other possible uses.

When you decide to participate in a paid clinical trial, make sure you understand the agreements in the study. If you are given information you don’t understand, never be afraid to ask questions. Ask for further explanation or instruction to know what to expect from the trial.