The Personal Experience of a Clinical Trial Patient

Clinical Trials Magazine: July 21, 2014

I have been working in clinical research for over ten years. I was originally based in a Phase I Clinical Trials Unit but later moved to the NHS. After working in a number of clinical roles with patients, I now work in GCP Quality Assurance. It is my job to check that clinical trials are completed to the highest ethical standards, and that regulatory requirements are met at all times. After working on numerous clinical trials across multiple disease areas and throughout different clinical phases, I always wondered if put in the situation, I would agree to be a clinical trial patient. I didn’t expect that I would be faced with this situation so soon.

In 2007, at the age of 27, I started having a number of health issues, particularly with my skin. In 2010, the problems worsened as my nails started to turn brown, and pits started forming. When I visited my GP, I was told it was just a fungal infection and would clear with tablets. I had taken the tablets for over a year with no change. In fact, the ‘fungal skin and nail infection’ only got worse. I ended up visiting a new GP who requested laboratory sampling. On receipt of a negative result for infection, my GP suggested it may be psoriasis (I didn’t realise psoriasis affected the nails). At the time, I was undertaking my Masters degree in clinical research part-time while working a full-time job. I was even doing a research project to examine ‘pharmacovigilance’ – the identification and assessment of adverse reactions to medicines.Read More