fbpx

What are Inclusion and Exclusion Criteria in Clinical Trials?

Inclusion and Exclusion Criteria in Clinical Trials

Without clinical trials, it would be impossible to develop new medicines, cures, vaccines, and other medical products. These research studies test investigational products with human participants to ensure products are adequately safe and effective before they can be offered to the general public. Medical products with broad use, like over-the-counter medicines or vaccines, tend to be tested in a wide range of people with few restrictions as to who can participate in later phases of clinical trials, while medications or devices designed to help people with specific illnesses … Read more

Can You Catch COVID-19 Twice?

I Already Had the Coronavirus; Can I Get COVID-19 Again? Due to the high prevalence of the Delta Variant of COVID-19 and the many unanswered questions surrounding the novel coronavirus, many are worried about becoming infected. For those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine, been sick with the virus already, or both, the worry might not be as strong due to the antibodies present in their bodies. But the question nevertheless is there: Can you get COVID-19 twice? The short answer is yes, but the longer answer takes … Read more

The COVID-19 Delta Variant: What It Means for Vaccinated People

The COVID-19 Delta Variant: Exploring the B.1.617.2 Variant of SARS-COV-2

I Got the COVID Vaccine: Should I Worry About the Delta Variant of Coronavirus? COVID-19 is still dominating headlines, but instead of focusing on the vaccination efforts around the globe, a relatively new variant of COVID-19, B.1.617.2, known as the Delta variant, is commanding media attention. Because of its highly contagious nature, some states, like Nebraska, Georgia and Louisiana are currently (as of July 27) seeing the rates of new coronavirus cases sit between 10 and 15%, and nationwide, over 83% of all new COVID-19 cases in the … Read more

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Vaccine Development: What’s Next?

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Vaccine Development: What's Next?

Respiratory syncytial (sin-sish-ul) virus, or RSV (also known as human orthopneumovirus), is a virus that affects the lungs and airways. Even if you haven’t heard of RSV, you’ve likely been infected with it. Almost 90% of children are infected with RSV before they are two years old. RSV is the leading cause of pneumonia and bronchiolitis in infants in the United States. For most people, RSV causes upper respiratory infection and mild, cold-like symptoms (e.g., congestion, low-grade fever). However, RSV can cause severe, life-threatening lower respiratory infections, such … Read more

What are Viruses vs. Bacteria vs. Infections, etc.?

In any medical setting, knowing the definition of a word or the difference between terms can help you be more engaged in a discussion about your health. When it comes to your understanding of your health, no questions should be off limits. One question care providers often hear is, “So, I’m sick with this virus. Why can’t I get an antibiotic to treat it?” Knowing the difference between viruses, bacteria, and the infections they cause can help answer that question. But it starts with knowing what those words … Read more

Diversity in Clinical Trials

Over the past year, media outlets have covered a number of stories on COVID-19 vaccine trial volunteers. These volunteers wanted to contribute to the development of a vaccine that could protect their loved ones. Many volunteers spoke out about at-risk family members. COVID-19 has disproportionately affected people from racial and ethnic minority groups. Age, genetics, gender, and a number of other characteristics can lead to vastly different responses to the same disease — or vaccination — among people. This is why diverse populations need to be represented in … Read more

The Companies Involved in Clinical Research

As COVID-19 swept the U.S., Meridian began enrolling people for vaccine trials at sites nationwide. We frequently heard the same questions: Which vaccine is this trial for? Is it one Meridian is creating? Can I join the trial for the Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech, Novavax, etc. vaccine? One silver lining of the pandemic (if there can be such a thing) is that more people became interested in the vaccine research and development process. It often surprised newcomers to hear that Meridian doesn’t actually create new vaccines or products. Instead, Meridian … Read more

What is Informed Consent?

Joining a clinical trial is an important decision. Most participants come to the clinic with questions about clinical trials and what joining one could mean. This is why every study involves an informed consent process. Informed consent is the process of ensuring a potential participant fully understands the details of a clinical trial — and their role in a study — before they join. Throughout a study, participants will also be notified of any changes to the study that may affect them. To help someone decide whether or … Read more

SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Mutations, Variants, and Vaccines

COVID-19 is still dominating media headlines, and for good reason. Several vaccines have been granted Emergency Use Authorization, but new case and death rates have reached record highs in the U.S. recently. One update is drawing immense attention, concern, and confusion — new variants of COVID-19 have recently emerged. Strain, variant, or mutation? SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) is a strain of the coronavirus family. So there aren’t new strains of SARS-CoV-2, but there are new variants (a.k.a. ‘variant strains’). Variants develop from mutations, or changes, to … Read more

Managing Common Vaccine Side Effects

Managing-Vaccine-Side-Effects

With the emergency use authorization (EUA) of COVID-19 vaccines, many are wondering — and speculating about — what side effects may occur. Rumors have swirled about everything from fatigue and anaphylaxis (severe allergic reactions), to Bell’s palsy (temporary facial paralysis) and effects on fertility. The side effects of authorized COVID-19 vaccines are likely to be similar to side effects of other common vaccines, including yearly flu shots. As always, if you have questions about a specific vaccine, you should always ask your doctor or healthcare provider. Here are … Read more