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NIH Clinical Research Trials and You

Finding Trials on ClinicalTrials.gov

You can search for clinical trials by visiting http://www.clinicaltrials.gov.

  • You can use the basic search box to enter the name of a disorder or drug and locate research studies taking place near you.
  • You can use the advanced search to add additional information, such as the age range for eligible study participants or study identification number.  

To do a Basic Search

Use the basic search box on the Basic Search page or at the top of any page on ClinicalTrials.gov.

  1. Enter a word or phrase in the Search box. The word can be a medical condition, disease, drug, device, or procedure, for example: lung cancer AND radiation.
  2. Click on the “Search” button to see trials that match your search terms.
  3. Your results will display. Click on any trial to obtain additional information.

Tip: Not all clinical research studies involve surgical or drug treatments for a health condition or disease. Some may focus on testing medical procedures or devices, evaluating prevention strategies, or obtaining family genetic history.

To do an Advanced Search

  1. Use Advanced Search to find results that may be more tailored to your needs. You can enter terms into multiple fields that offer information about a medical condition or disease, study location, an age range for eligible participants, and whether a trial seeks volunteers or not. You do not need to fill in all the fields.
  2. To limit your search to trials that need or will need participants, choose “Open Studies” in the “Recruitment” field. The trials you retrieve will be clearly marked as “Recruiting,” “Not yet recruiting,” or “Active, not recruiting.”
  3. Click on the “Search” button to see trials that match your search terms.
  4. Your results will display. Click on any trial to obtain additional information.

Tip: Results of your search may show trials that are no longer recruiting. To limit your results to trials need or will need participants, select the checkbox for “Include only open studies” found on the search results page.

Learn More

Visit ClinicalTrials.gov Online Training for brief animated tutorials on how to get the most out of your ClinicalTrials.gov search.

This page last reviewed on April 29, 2013

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