If you are a family member or caregiver of someone with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) or are in the early stages of AD, you may have considered getting involved in clinical trials. But many people are not aware of the importance of clinical trials in the future of Alzheimer’s treatment and prevention.
In fact, this is a very exciting time for AD research as experts begin to learn more and more about this disorder and scientists make great strides in identifying just what helps to stave off symptoms while identifying potential new treatment and prevention measures for AD. The medications and treatment measures used today have been made available by clinical research which is due to literally thousands of volunteers who got involved in clinical trials.
Many people are hesitant to get involved in clinical trials because they are unsure of just what volunteering entails. There are many misperceptions when it comes to clinical trials, so here are some common myths and facts to help clarify the confusion many people have about volunteering for AD research:
Myth #1-There are already ample people involved in clinical trials, they don’t need me.
Fact-The only way safe new treatments can become available for those with AD is with clinical trials and many more people are needed-that number is presently around 50,000 are needed including those with AD and other volunteers at research sites across the country.
Myth #2-Joining a clinical trial means I will receive a sub-standard quality of care
Fact-Those who are involved in clinical trials receive high quality of care and research shows these participants exhibit a better response to treatment than those who are not involved in clinical trials.
Myth #3-There are no clinical trials going on close to where I live
Fact-Many participants are surprised that there are literally hundreds of locations where clinical trials are taking place and many pay a stipend and/or travel fees to participants who live far away. Check out this link to find a clinical trial closest to you; http://www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers/clinical-trials or http://www.alz.org/research/clinical_trials/find_clinical_trials_trialmatch.asp
Myth #4-Clinical trials require that I take medications that are potentially dangerous with unknown side effects.
Fact-Medications are deemed safe and experts know that drugs and treatments have a pretty high probability of being effective before they are EVER given to humans in clinical trials.
Myth #5-Once I get started in a clinical trial I cannot quit no matter how uncomfortable the treatment may be.
Fact- Participants involved in clinical trials are well informed in advance regarding the exact treatment and/or medications involved and you can drop out anytime you or your physician decides that the clinical trial is not in your best interest.
Participating in clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease is one of the best ways to help the future of the cause. Why not join thousands of others who have been a part of helping to identify better treatment and prevention of AD. Being pro-active in helping with the cause will also help you gain access to some of the latest interventions for the disease while playing an active part in your own care.
Learn more about AD for caregivers by CLICKING HERE to sign up for our 25 lesson course at AlzU.org.