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Clinical Trials Frequently Asked Questions

Clinical Trial Glossary
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Glossary results: S

Refers to trials which test the best way to detect certain diseases or health conditions.

Any undesired actions or effects of a drug or treatment. Negative or adverse effects may include headache, nausea, hair loss, skin irritation or other physical problems. Experimental drugs must be evaluated for both immediate and long-term side effects.

A study in which one party, either the investigator or participant, is unaware of what medication the participant is taking; also called single-masked study.

A treatment currently in wide use and approved by the FDA, considered to be effective in the treatment of a specific disease or condition.

Treatment regimen or medical management based on state-of-the-art participant care.

The probability that an event or difference occurred by chance alone. In clinical trials, the level of statistical significance depends on the number of participants studied and the observations made, as well as the magnitude of differences observed.

A primary or secondary outcome used to judge the effectiveness of a treatment.

The primary investigative techniques used in an observational protocol. Types include purpose, duration, selection and timing.


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Information included in the Glossary is from Clinicaltrials.gov, which uses content from AIDSinfo, CenterWatch, Inc., ECRI, Eli Lilly and Company, MediStudy.com, Inc. and National Cancer Institute.