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Are cancer patients being taken for a ride?

One issue that always raises many uncomfortable questions and more troubling answers is that of drug trials. Drug testing has always been an ethical issue and has kindled a lot of heated arguments for and against it. Recent studies have revealed that cancer victims suffer the most when it comes to drug testing when sometimes very toxic new anti cancer drugs are tested on unsuspecting victims in the name of conducting a study. A new Harris interactive study report says that an alarming number of cancer patients say that they never knew or that they were never told about the possibility of enrolling in a clinical trial for cancer treatment. Among the 16% who knew about the trials but declined to participate, 30% believed that the therapy used in the trial would be less effective than "the standard treatment" and 31% feared that they might receive an inactive placebo rather than the treatment being studied. Placebos are never used in trials on drugs that may be used to treat cancer. While a few drug trials are very successful, a few of them are very disastrous. Especially with the results being unknown for a very long period of time, the harmful side effects become apparent only later and at times many lives are at stake. This issue of drug trials has already opened up a Pandora’s box and it is sure to be a raging debate for a long time to come

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