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Clinical Trials

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) is strongly committed to supporting research aimed at preventing and treating heart, lung, and blood diseases and conditions and sleep disorders.

NHLBI-supported research has led to many advances in medical knowledge and care. For example, this research has uncovered new understanding of how the elements of cardiac rehabilitation (rehab) improve overall health and well-being. 

Many more questions remain about heart diseases and conditions, and how to improve overall health. The NHLBI continues to support research aimed at learning more about cardiac rehab. For example, NHLBI-supported research includes studies that explore:

  • Whether cardiac rehab followed by home training reduces death and hospitalizations in patients who have chronic heart failure
  • Whether cardiac rehab improves memory and attention in addition to heart health
  • Whether adding stress management to a cardiac rehab program improves overall health more than rehab alone

Much of this research depends on the willingness of volunteers to take part in clinical trials. Clinical trials test new ways to prevent, diagnose, or treat various diseases and conditions.

For example, new treatments for a disease or condition (such as medicines, medical devices, surgeries, or procedures) are tested in volunteers who have the illness. Testing shows whether a treatment is safe and effective in humans before it is made available for widespread use.

By taking part in a clinical trial, you may gain access to new treatments before they're widely available. You also will have the support of a team of health care providers, who will likely monitor your health closely. Even if you don't directly benefit from the results of a clinical trial, the information gathered can help others and add to scientific knowledge.

If you volunteer for a clinical trial, the research will be explained to you in detail. You'll learn about treatments and tests you may receive, and the benefits and risks they may pose. You'll also be given a chance to ask questions about the research. This process is called informed consent.

If you agree to take part in the trial, you'll be asked to sign an informed consent form. This form is not a contract. You have the right to withdraw from a study at any time, for any reason. Also, you have the right to learn about new risks or findings that emerge during the trial.

For more information about clinical trials related to cardiac rehabilitation, talk with your doctor. You also can visit the following Web sites to learn more about clinical research and to search for clinical trials:

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Cardiac Rehabilitation Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. To find clinical trials that are currently underway for Cardiac Rehabilitation, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov.

 
December 24, 2013 Last Updated Icon

The NHLBI updates Health Topics articles on a biennial cycle based on a thorough review of research findings and new literature. The articles also are updated as needed if important new research is published. The date on each Health Topics article reflects when the content was originally posted or last revised.