WHY DO PEOPLE PARTICIPATE IN STUDY PROGRAMS? (Click here to view movie clip about L-MARC Research Center)
Volunteers who participate in study programs may receive study-related procedures such as medical evaluations, physical exams, laboratory/blood testing, dietitian visits, EKG's, chest X-rays and study drug - all without charge. Sometimes, study volunteers may receive reimbursement for time and travel. But our experience suggests that these are typically not the major reasons why volunteers participate in study programs. Most of our study volunteers participate because they appreciate the one-on-one chance to discuss their health issues with a trained health professional. Other study volunteers enjoy the social atmosphere of being part of the research family. But perhaps the most important reason that our study volunteers participate in study programs is to assist us in the research and development of investigational medications/drugs for an assortment of medical conditions. They recognize that their efforts may potentially result in the development of safer and more effective treatments for future generations to come. And in this way, they find participation in study programs an enjoyable and rewarding experience.
HOW DO I BENEFIT FROM PARTICIPATION IN A STUDY PROGRAM?
It should be made clear that L-MARC is not a free treatment center. Our primary focus is investigational research. Therefore, most of our study programs involve the use of drugs that have yet to be proven effective or safe. Furthermore, many of our study programs compare study drug to placebo (or “dummy” pills). As such, in some studies, volunteers may not be guaranteed that they will be on active treatment, sometimes throughout the entire study program.
Nevertheless, for the reasons previously discussed, our study volunteers often feel they benefit from participation in study programs. The safety monitoring procedures such as study-related medical evaluations, physical exams, laboratory/blood testing, dietitian visits (with personalized review of diet history, and personalized dietary recommendations), EKG's, and chest X-rays often represents a battery of testing to a degree that exceeds what their insurance might approve, or what they might receive by simply going to their doctor. As a result, many (if not most) of the abnormalities found on physical exams, or found on laboratory testing are unrelated to the study program medication/drug. In other words, because we evaluate our study volunteers to a degree that is specified by a study protocol, we often discover medical issues that would have otherwise gone undetected. And once these previously undetected abnormalities are found, the study volunteer, and the study volunteer’s doctor is notified for further evaluation and treatment.
WHAT STUDY PROGRAMS ARE AVAILABLE? (Click here for L-MARC Clinical Trial Ad Page)
We typically have several metabolic study programs ongoing at any point in time. Therefore, if you have a metabolic condition that you feel might make you eligible for participation, then simply call us and speak with one of our staff. You also can leave a message on the phone, and we will get back with you. (If you do not hear back within a few days, please call back!) Also, if you are not eligible for a current study program, keep in touch. We may very well have a different study program available for you in the future.
HOW DO I PARTICIPATE IN A STUDY PROGRAM? (Click here for the Contact Us Page)
First of all, you must qualify by having a medical condition that requires a treatment that we are studying. Secondly, you must meet inclusion criteria, while avoiding exclusion criteria. Thirdly, you must carefully evaluate the consent form to see if this is something you really want to do, and are really committed to do. Finally, if you agree to participate by signing the consent form, you will likely receive an extensive evaluation including laboratory and clinical exams. Afterwards, if you continue to qualify, then you may receive study drug treatment. (Please remember, you cannot change any aspect of your medical care, nor can you undergo any study related procedures, including blood testing, until you understand, and sign a consent form.)
WHAT HAPPENS ONCE THE STUDY PROGRAM IS OVER?
Once the study program is over, you will receive an “exit letter” that will briefly describe the study again, and will list conditions or medical issues that were found, or that occurred during your participation in the study program. Although the vast majority of these conditions and medical issues will likely be unrelated to the study drug, we feel it is important that you be provided this letter, with a copy sent to your primary care doctor for your medical records.
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