A side effect of Rheumatoid Arthritis is the number of solicitations we get asking us to participate in efforts, called clinical trials, to validate new drugs for FDA approval. A clinical trial is an experiment on human volunteers to determine the effectiveness of a drug that manufacturers are required to undertake to justify it’s retail sale. Participants are given an ‘investigational drug’ designed to alleviate their disease in some way. Their physical responses to the drug, good or bad, are closely monitored. They sign a consent form guaranteeing that Big Pharma will not be held responsible for any negative effects of the experiment.
Should they volunteer?
Clinical trials for a drug called Tenovir, designed for use as a preventive for HIV infection, were halted in Cambodia and other developing countries when unexpectedly sophisticated local activists shut the program down.