This book dissects medical research methodology and through a penetrating inquiry into its triumphs and tragedies explains why correct answers are so hard to achieve. What emerges from this inquiry is the unexpected and stunning conclusion that medical researchers can never be sure that they’ve ended up with a truthful answer. In IT’S GREAT! readers learn why the quest for knowledge through clinical trials is fraught with problems that even the best researchers cannot overcome.
A fascinating gallery of cases illustrates the perils investigators face. Particular emphasis is given to the "clinical trial", the so-called gold standard for medical research, and its seven fatal flaws show succinctly why getting the right research answer is so problematic. In example after example, the author challenges the notion that medical research is too complex for the average citizen to comprehend. Understanding the imperfect world of clinical research allows the reader to step up and begin to ask his or her own questions, to challenge conclusions, to have doubts and not be afraid to raise them. People who care about their health and the health of others should not be innocent bystanders; they have a right, maybe even an obligation to become involved. After all, its their health that is at stake.
"Written by someone well versed in the complexities of biomedical research, this easy to understand book provides valuable information on the difficulty of finding the truth about drug safety and efficacy. (Dr.) Gauch has done us all a great service by explaining in a lucid and insightful manner why we need to be cautious in interpreting the results of preliminary, unconfirmed, or less than definitive clinical trials. This book is must reading not only for those involved in biomedical research, health care professionals, students and disease related society members but for the general public as well." Stuart D. Cook, M.D. Past President, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey -currently the Ruth Dunietz Kushner and Michael Jay Serwitz Professor of Neurology and Neurosciences at the University