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What are the criteria for participating in a clinical trial?

The goal of a clinical trial is to study a new or existing medication or device. For each trial, researchers develop eligibility criteria. Factors include age, sex, type and stage of disease, previous treatment history and other medical conditions.

Clinical trials retain very specific participation guidelines. Establishing and maintaining these guidelines is a critical part of producing meaningful and reliable results. The factors that allow someone to participate in a clinical trial are called "inclusion criteria," while those that disallow someone are called "exclusion criteria." Typical criteria include age, gender, the type and stage of a disease, previous treatment history, and other medical conditions.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.