The Cytel blog keeps you up to speed with the latest developments in biostatistics and clinical biometrics.

When Biostatisticians Disagree About Ethics

July 6, 2017

 By Esha Senchaudhuri

The ethical benefits of adaptive clinical trials have been widely acclaimed: higher prospects for patients to be enrolled into the correct trial arm [1]; shorter trials for the most effective new therapies (see the early stopping outcome of the MUSEC trial) [2]; and enrollments commensurate with the needs of research, i.e. the last patient enrolled is not superfluous to a trial’s outcomes (e.g. according to one clinical biostatistician, “trial designs that learn more and treat better with less burden and sacrificing of patients”) [3].

However, the acknowledgement that ethical benefits exist is a separate question from the degree to which they exist when compared to a more traditional design.

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