Joining a Trial

Clinical trials have possible benefits and risks.

In a trial, you receive high quality medical care, have a medical team that will watch you closely, and sometimes get access to new cancer drugs. But not all trials are right for everyone. Factors such as your medical history, health status, or age can affect whether you qualify for a given trial. 

If you are interested in a clinical trial, talk with your doctor about what to expect. Ask about possible side effects and how a trial might affect your daily life. Joining a trial can sometimes involve extra time, travel, or costs.

Learn more and see if a clinical trial is right for you:

  • The National Cancer Institute (NCI) offers many online resources - from a cancer drug glossary to a list of questions to ask your doctor before joining a trial.
  • The National Comprehensive Cancer Network offers treatment guides for patients and information on help with paying for cancer care. 
  • The NCI Contact Center offers confidential help by phone, live chat, and email from 9 am to 9 pm Monday-Friday in both English and Spanish. Call 1-800-4-CANCER or go online.
  • To learn about different terms related to cancer and cancer trials, visit our glossary.