Can anyone take part in a clinical trial?

Clinical trials are carried out by medical research organizations and charities who need to test developments in drugs and medical procedures before taking them any further or putting them on the market. Medical trials are heavily regulated and they are only carried out once the drug or device in question has passed safety tests and gains the approval of a health authority and/or ethics committee so as not to put any of its human testers in danger, though as with any treatment, there still remains some degree of uncertainty. The participants in drug trials are typically volunteers, though most trials offer considerable payment to fulfil their research needs as quickly and efficiently as possible. There are different volunteer requirements for each trial, depending on what kind it is, and so not any old person can sign up to do one. These strict entry conditions are put in place because, for accuracy, the participants in each trial need to be as similar to each other as is humanly possible. Trials are expensive, time-consuming and – in a sense – urgent all at once, so precision is key. For basic Phase 0 or Phase 1 drug trials, potential volunteers must undergo a medical screening in order to take part. Unless their results are positive and fit the needs of the trial co-coordinator, they won’t be able to partake as it is essential that the testers are at a level of health appropriate for that particular study to get accurate results and avoid discrepancies that could put the entire trial in jeopardy.

Tests carried out in a medical screening typically include: – Blood sampling– Drug abuse testing – Weight and height measurement – Measure of blood pressure, heart rate and temperature – Urine sampling – Measurement of the electrical activity of the heart – Pregnancy testing (only applicable to women).

This medical screening is carried out for all clinical trials, but for the aforementioned drug trials the volunteer’s eligibility generally depends entirely on it, while others have additional requirements or specifications. Most other trials look for patients and volunteers who have a particular disease or medical condition, so different rules apply. These trials are carried out by patient organizations and charities focusing on finding treatments and solutions to things such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and arthritis, each trial having varying entry conditions. Because of the nature of the disease and its many different kinds, cancer trials are complex and contain variants from study to study, as doctors and researchers usually focus on a single type of cancer to find out what does or does help to treat it. Personal GP’s are generally consulted prior to going into a trial, and they can advise against participating for any number of reasons. Other factors that influence eligibility into any clinical trial can include age, medical treatments currently being undergone, the particular stage of the participant’s condition or over-subscription.

Christmas is finally over!

Christmas is finally over, the decorations have been lovingly packed away in their boxes, and I can look back with fond memories. This Christmas was pretty special, my toddler was really excited this year about Santa coming down the chimney, It was such a delight to have him so engrossed in Christmas. It was also my babies 1st Christmas, she was only a mere 13 days old, but it was so special to have her here for a proper family Christmas.

The kids were all pleased with their presents. I had spent Santa had spent a great amount of time choosing the perfect presents. My children were quite low maintenance with their Christmas lists, with my 10 year old saying he didn’t have anything he really wanted. He opened up a new HD television for his Xbox and Skylanders Giants. He was very chuffed! My daughter got a Cabbage Patch Doll, which bought back fond memories from when I was a child. My toddler got the Octonauts Gup X he had spent months hoping he would get. My husband wanted a Kindle, but he lacks time to actually sit down and read, so I got him a new mp3 player so he can listen to some mp3 audio books instead. I got a gorgeous Tunnocks teacake mug, which is very appropriate for me, as I am a bit of a teacake addict!

When it came to presents for my parents, it was tricky knowing what to get them. They have everything they could possibly want, and if they ever want anything then they go out and buy it. I don’t want to spend time and effort buying them a present that never gets used, or that they feel they have to use just to please me. With this all in mind I thought a voucher for their favourite restaurant would be good, but instead I went with personalised handmade mugs with their names on. They were a hit, and rather strangely my sister bought them a teapot with my nieces footprints on, not bad considering we didn’t even discuss it beforehand!

Did you get any amazing presents or perhaps you gave an amazing gift? I would love to hear about it!

Can you really have it all?

As a working mum to four children, everything has to be in it’s place. There is no point in not being organised, even for the slightest things. Each night before School the kids packed lunches are prepared and put in the fridge ready for the morning. The kids have to get their clean clothes out before bed too,everyone plays their part in organising in this house. Preparation is the key!

So can you really have it all? Well you can certainly try, and that’s exactly what I do. I work hard not only with the house and getting everyone organised but also with my working life. I work hard to be able to afford the house we live in. I truly believe that the world is your oyster in your working life, you can achieve anything you put your mind to. I dipped my toe into the world of money making when I left school at the tender age of 16. I managed to blag a job with a top London bank, that is where I saw what potential there is to make money and be successful in what you do. I dreamt at the age of 16 of being a personal banker, but there was many other banking jobs which mean you can make a tidy wage packet that you can be proud of. My highlight was buying myself a Louis Vuitton handbag with my wages, the wages I had worked hard to earn with an honest days wage.

So why am I not a successful banker? Despite the busy London life being enjoyable, sociable and with great money, my heart yearned for more. I left London life to have my first son, and have never gone back. One day when the kids have grown up more, and possibly left home then I will no doubt go back to commuting to the City to work. But meanwhile my kids are so young, and so important to me that I just couldn’t bear the thought of being away from them for 14 hours a day, they would be asleep by the time I got home and would probably be asleep when I left for work in the morning. Especially considering how reliable the First Great Western train service is!

So can you really have it all? Well it depends what you want out of life. I love my family, and my priorities are my children and I will pretty much work any job if it means more time to spend with them.