Benefits and risks

What are the benefits of participating in a clinical trial?

By participating in a clinical trial, you are first and foremost standing in solidarity with the generations of today and tomorrow, a gesture of which you can be proud and for which you will certainly be thanked.

Participating in a clinical trial is an important act of global solidarity because the knowledge and experience gained during these trials is shared at the international level. It means that medicine also evolves beyond a country's borders.

Since certain clinical trials give participating patients access to the latest treatments before they are available on the market, the doctor treating the patient plays a key role in informing them of the different possible scenarios (placebo or drug). For example, trial participants will have access to the latest scientific advances. Sometimes, it concerns a new chance of a cure or an increase in quality of life.

What are the potential risks of participating in a clinical trial?

Since a clinical trial is designed to answer a question about the investigational drug itself, there is no guarantee yet that this drug will be effective. What is more, depending on the type of clinical trial, there is no guarantee that you will receive the new drug that is being investigated. You are just as likely to be given a placebo and therefore not experience the benefits during or after the clinical trial.

As the treatment is experimental, clinical trial participants may also experience unexpected side effects. Even before the start of the trial, measures are taken to prevent and address identified potential risks. Clinical trials are also closely monitored to detect and prevent these side effects as soon as possible. All participants undergo a specific medical follow-up.

What if a problem occurs during the clinical trial?

In accordance with the Belgian Law of 7 May 2004 on experiments with human subjects (FR), the organiser (also called the sponsor) of a clinical trial is required to take out "no-fault" insurance. Any harm suffered (directly or indirectly) by participants as a result of the clinical trial will always be compensated through this insurance, even if the liable clinical investigator was not at fault.


Last updated on 08/02/2022