Finding Clinical Trials

Close up of a microscope

What are clinical trials?

A clinical trial is a complete investigation of a medicine or a medical device by the Food and Drug Administration to ensure it’s safe and effective before it’s released to the public. Some clinical trials could benefit stroke survivors. Clinical trials are based on a set of rules called protocols, which describe eligibility, test schedule, procedures and medications, and study length. Participants are seen regularly by the research staff to monitor their health and to determine the safety and effectiveness of the treatment. Participants may decline to be a part of the trial or withdraw from it at any time.

Are clinical research studies safe?

The government has strict guidelines and safeguards to protect people who participate in clinical trials. Every clinical trial in the U.S. must be approved and monitored by an Institutional Review Board to make sure the risks are as low as possible and are worth any potential benefits. Before participating in a trial, a person must sign an informed consent agreement, which provides detailed information about the study, medications and procedures. Experienced, trained physicians who have been designated principal investigators closely monitor study participants.

Why should I participate in a clinical trial?

By participating in a stroke clinical trial, you’re taking an active role in your health and helping others by contributing to medical research.

You’ll also:

  • Gain access to new treatments that aren’t available to the public.
  • Obtain expert care at leading health care facilities. Medical visits related to the study are free. This includes physical exams, doctors’ visits, medications and lab tests.

How can I enroll in a stroke clinical trial?

To locate clinical trials near you, visit It’s a registry and results database of clinical studies of human participants conducted around the world. Research projects and clinical trials pertaining to post-stroke treatment are increasing each year. Stroke survivors and caregivers are encouraged to check the resource center page regularly for updates.