Randomise Me: A free randomised trial generator
Posted on October 29, 2013 by Norah Essali
Since you’re reading this article, you’re probably interested in EBM and have probably heard of randomised clinical trials and formed a sort of appreciation of their importance in answering medical queries (If you would like to know more about randomised trials, click here to see our blogs about them!). However, have you ever thought of putting a question that nags you in your daily life into a randomised trial? Well, author/medical doctor/academic/journalist Ben Goldacre along with Nesta developed a website where you can do just that. Randomise Me enables you to generate your own randomised trial of questions relevant to your job, studies or life and helps you run the trial then analyze the result to finally come to that answer you’ve been looking for.
What’s the point?
Randomised trials are the gold standard in clinical trials and have repeatedly helped improve and advance medical care. An example of a clinical trial that changed a method of intervention is one run by the NHLBI Women’s Health Initiative that tested whether hormone therapy (HT) reduced the risk of heart disease in postmenopausal women.The study found that HT increased the risk of heart disease in the first few years, and it also increased the risk of stroke and blood clots. In women who took a combination of estrogen and progestin, the risk of breast cancer also increased. As a result, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration now recommends never using HT to prevent heart disease.
That is just one example of many. However, despite proving their efficacy, controversy and misconceptions still surrounding randomised trials, labeling them as unethical, too complex, or just flat out unnecessary. One way to change those misconceptions is to clarify and simplify the process of conducting a randomised trial, which is what this project aims to do. Offering guidance and support from beginning to end will encourage a greater number of people to undertake a such a reliable method and apply it to answering questions related to various fields in life.
Generalizing the use of evidence in everyday life will help remove all the notions about randomised trial and will advocate for their use to eventually fix the problems in the scientific field. Excessive certainty in any field is harmful let alone the field of saving lives, hence constantly questioning, searching, and experimenting – in a standardized method – is the only way to keep moving forward.
How to go about it?
It’s pretty straight forward; Go on the website, take the tutorial, become a member, and voila! You’re ready to create your own trial with the help of a step by step guide. Have fun!