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Clinical Trials FAQ

What is a clinical trial?

What are the benefits of participating in a clinical trial?

Patients partake in clinical trials for a variety of reasons. These include the potential to benefit from a new drug or treatment procedure, improved management of symptoms and the opportunity to contribute to the future advancement of care for others.

What clinical trials or enrolling studies are available at Retina Specialty Institute?

We engage in clinical trials that we feel will best advance the health needs of our patients, with special interest in those striving to impact leading causes of blindness:

  • Age-Related Wet Macular Degeneration (Wet AMD)
  • Diabetic Macular Edema/Diabetic Retinopathy (DME)
  • Retinal Vein Occlusion (BRVO/CRVO)

How are clinical trials conducted?

Clinical trials are conducted in a series of steps, called phases - each phase is designed to answer a separate research question.

  • Phase I: Researchers test a new drug or treatment in a small group of people for the first time to evaluate its safety, determine a safe dosage range, and identify side effects.
  • Phase II: The drug or treatment is given to a larger group of people to see if it is effective and to further evaluate its safety.
  • Phase III: The drug or treatment is given to large groups of people to confirm its effectiveness, monitor side effects, compare it to commonly used treatments, and collect information that will allow the drug or treatment to be used safely.
  • Phase IV: Studies are done after the drug or treatment has been marketed to gather information on the drug's effect in various populations and any side effects associated with long-term use.

Are all clinical trials effective?

Clinical trials provide patients either a promising new treatment or the best available conventional treatment. While there is no guarantee that any treatment will be successful, clinical trials have been proven to offer some of the most advanced retinal treatments available today.

Am I a clinical trial candidate?

To learn if you are a good candidate for an on-going clinical trial, speak with your Retina Specialty Institute physician at your next appointment or contact the Retina Specialty Institute office near you by calling 1-855-5RETINA.

Where can I learn more?

To learn more about clinical trials, please visit

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