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Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 7:53 pm

Over here the sad news is that 6 people have been seriously affected by a new drug that was being trialled. Last night it was being said that some of the people suffered multiple organ failures and were close to death.

Sympathies are divided with some saying that if you do this solely for the money then "tough."


Six men remain in intensive care after being taken ill during a clinical drugs trial in north-west London.

The healthy volunteers were testing an anti-inflammatory drug at a research unit based at Northwick Park Hospital when they suffered a reaction.

Relatives are with the patients, who suffered multiple organ failure. Two men are said to be critically ill.

An investigation has begun at the unit, run by Parexel, which said it followed recommended guidelines in its trial.

The men were being paid to take part in the early stages of a trial for the drug to treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and leukaemia until they were taken ill on Monday within hours of taking it.
wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:09 pm

I imagine with any testing of an unknown substance, there will be a degree of uncertainty- the drug testing clinic should have outlined the risks.

It's not something I personally would like to be involved with- I value my health and my life more than £10 or whatever they give you.

I hope they recover soon and the clinic investigates what's happened.
Does this make anyone feel that drug testing on animals rather than humans is a good idea?  stirthepot 
- Alec
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:21 pm

Quoting Raffik (Reply 1):
I value my health and my life more than £10 or whatever they give you.

It could be around £3000 to £4000.

They interviewed someone on the radio this morning who seems to live on drug trials. Since he left university in 1997 he did 4 trials a year and got around £3500 for each one. £14000 a year tax free (I'd assume) is better than a lot of people get working, if you're alive to get it..... He did have one test where he went temporarily blind.
wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:45 pm

Yes, I have just heard on Radio 2 that the current rate is around £2,000. To be honest, if I was that desperate for money, I would rather become a rent boy than have unknown and potentially dangerous and fatal drugs injected inside me. He said that someone was even offered a few thousand pounds to have his little toe cut off and put back on again.

On the other hand- these people are testing the reaction of these drugs, so it's all part of their job.
- Alec
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 9:01 pm

I've been part of a trial here in the US and I can tell you that people are informed of the risks. It's a shame that people are sick but if there was no risk then there would be no need for the trials.

btw, in the US it's not permissable to pay large sums to volunteers. Essentially you are paid for your out of pocket expenses based on the distance between your residence and the medical facility and the number of visits required. The reason for this policy is obvious as it reduces the chance of people "volunteering" for the wrong reasons.
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 9:50 pm

I have been in a trial, too.

It was in 98, short before my first trip to Kazakhstan. I wanted a vaccination against Hepatitis, which my health insurance would not have paid, so it would have cost me some DM350 (~ €175).

As chance would have it, I found an ad at my university - a medical company wanted to test a new hepatitis vaccine and were looking for probants.

It was basically an existing vaccine, that was modified so it would become more effective. Before, you needed 3 shots within several weeks, the new one was supposed to work after the 1st injection already.

The idea was to make a blind-test. Probands were divided into 3 groups, so 1 received a placebo after the 1st vaccination, 2nd one after 2nd vaccination, and 3rd one received 3 shots of vaccine. No one knew what he received. In the end, they tested if everybody was vaccined (it worked, so they had a proof that the vaccine was effective after the 1st injection already).

The deal was that we would receive DM600 (~ €300) for the 4 sessions, plus a free vaccination, should it turn out in the end that the vaccine did not work.

I decided that the risk would be rather small, so I joined and thus earned money, instead of having to spend it. I would probably do the same thing again in a similar situation.

Apart from the money: these trials are necessary for meds to be released for sale (at least here in Germany). And it is impossible to test them in theory (or on mice etc.) only. So without test persons, there would be no improved meds for healing those who need it.

Thus, I would not compare it to prostitution. Sure, most people would basically take the risk just for the money, but it is necessary for scientific progress, so I would have at least a little respect for them.
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Wed Mar 15, 2006 11:41 pm

Do surgery trials count?

During my long course of frequent facial reconstructive surgeries throughout my childhood and young adulthood, I have had periodic studies done on me by my craniofacial team doctors, who were trying out new surgical devices, techniques, and methods.

For example, in 1982, the cleft palate/craniofacial team at St. Louis Children's Hospital (Washington Univ. Medical Center) introduced a new 3-dimensional computed tomography (CT) imaging technique that used computers to make a 3-dimensional model of the skull from CT scan images, so the doctors could map out and plan surgeries on kids with craniofacial anomalies. This technique was tested on me in the summer of 1982, when I was 7, and I was staying there for a month for my first surgeries there. I still have the article that was written about it in the university magazine at home! It features CT images of my skull! I was studied many times there.

I was also studied many times by the team at Riley Hospital for Children (Indianapolis, IN). Often, my parents (or I, when I reached legal age) had to sign informed consent for studies, photography, etc. so the surgical team and anesthesiologists could use me for teaching, photography, and studies.

So, I have been used as a guinea pig in the past by my many doctors. I did not get paid for this, but I feel nonetheless grateful for my opportunities to "teach" them in my own way as their subject (and help others indirectly)!

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
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RE: Anyone Ever Done Medical Drug Trials?

Thu Mar 16, 2006 12:51 am

I did for an Asthma drug when i was younger.....It never came to market....


Sometimes all you can do is look them in the eye and ask " how much did your mom drink when she was pregnant with you?"

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