Basic Principles of the Medical Research – Clinical Research Example

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"Basic Principles of the Medical Research" is a wonderful example of clinical research. Identifying a broad area of inquiry In therapeutic research, the potential benefits to the patients may be significantly less than the risks. The patients’ interests should be the main goal and not the development of new practices. While deciding on an area of inquiry the researcher must identify whether there is an epidemiological concern. Whether there is a health problem that needs to be investigated further and has the possibility of yielding fruitful results. It should be kept in mind that all research does not deliver the required results. The US National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) gives the definition of chronic illness as a condition that persists for three months or more.

While chronic diseases such as ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and polycystic ovary syndrome are caused by the body’ s immune or hormonal system and are not yet explained, many serious long-term illnesses may have a correlation with lifestyle factors such as tobacco smoking, excessive alcohol intake, poor diet and lack of exercise. (Prosser)Chronic illnesses include cancer, diabetes, heart attack, and stroke.

They cost Americans millions of dollars and countless lives each year. While identifying a broad area of inquiry in the field of chronic illnesses, it is ascertained that the relief of patients through research and development of new procedures will outweigh the costs. Research regarding chronic diseases can be done on specific foods that lead to the prevention of illnesses, such as blueberries, the importance of exercise, the relation of diet and cognitive performance, and so on, and so forth.   This research will seek to see the influence of various lifestyle factors on chronic diseases. Conducting a review of research literature is necessary as before starting a fresh research project, whether it is record-based or primary, all previous information should be processed.

The benefits and risks to the patients and the need for further research can be identified by this perusal. When records based research is undertaken which do not involve patients or volunteers directly researchers are still to conform to all the principles of research. Researchers must have the appropriate authority to access any research literature.

The resolutions from the  Ministerial Summit on Health Research  state that WHO is ‘ Committed to promoting access to reliable, relevant, and up-to-date evidence on the effects of interventions, based on a systematic review of the totality of available research findings, and taking into account existing models; ’ (WHO) Reviewing research literature on chronic illnesses shows that many sources now are focusing on natural ways to decrease the risks. The healthy diet, the importance of anti-oxidants, vegetables, and exercise all attribute to decreased chances of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, etc. According to the World Cancer Research Fund, simple changes in diet and exercise can prevent nearly 40 percent of breast and pancreatic cancers, 36 percent of lung cancers, over 60 percent of mouth cancers, a quarter of kidney cancers, and 45 percent of bowel cancers.

Vitamin D has been proven to prevent an astonishing 77 percent of all cancers, 90 percent of cancers can be prevented. (Adams) Identifying a researchable problem from reviewed literature: Once the research available has been reviewed, the research problem emerges. There has been active discussion on a healthy diet.

Many findings by major health organizations show that there is a major link between defeating and preventing chronic illnesses through lifestyle changes. The good news seems to be that by making lifestyle changes, statistics change. The everyday choices about what you do with your time, what you eat, and even what you decide to smear on your body affect long-term health. Both heart disease and cancer are largely environmental, and by improving your lifestyle, you will reduce your risk of getting heart disease or cancer. (Phuli Cohan) So the null hypothesis is that lifestyle changes and a healthy diet do not decrease the risk of chronic illnesses such as cancer.

The research will now aim to disprove this hypothesis as research literature shows that it is void. To identify the research problem is imperative as it focuses on the study in a specific direction and gives meaning to the research. Choosing a method and design for the identified problem: When the research project reaches the study design phase it is important that all research must be conducted with honesty and integrity. The participants’ interests must be put first while designing and executing research.

The research protocol must be strictly followed unless sanctioned by the research ethics committee or the funder. Concerns should be reported immediately if any threat to participants’ wellbeing is felt. Evidence of any fraud or misconduct with regards to financial, scientific methods, or these guidelines should be reported to the relevant authority.   Research must be based on properly developed standards and rules that have been approved by a research ethics committee. The goals, design, and methodology of the project should be justifiable, verifiable, and scientifically valid; and there should be no exploitation of participants. The selection of the research method is crucial for what conclusions can be made about the research problem.

It affects what can be said about the cause and factors influencing the problem. It is also important to choose a research method that is within the limitations of the researcher. In the case of the hypothesis that lifestyle factors do decrease the risk of chronic illnesses, research can be done in multiple ways. A CDC Study researched lifestyle factors that influence Cancer, Diabetes, and Other Diseases.

The researchers' aim was to prove that there is great evidence of lifestyle factors influencing chronic diseases. Dr. Ford and colleagues reviewed data from 23,513 German adults ages 35 to 65 who participated in the EPIC-Potsdam study. Between four years, the participants inputted their body weight and height. Personal interviews were conducted with each participant to record any existing diseases as well as social support, lifestyle factors, and food intake. After the data was collected, researchers looked at how well they conformed to the four major lifestyle factors that appear to prevent chronic diseases such as cancer, heart Never smoking Having a Body Mass Index (BMI) below 30 Exercising at least three and a half hours a week Following a healthy diet, which the researchers defined as high fruit and vegetable consumption combined with limited meat intake Nearly all of 23,513 study participants had at least one of the four factors.

Nine percent boasted all four factors. The results showed that there was a lower incidence of chronic disease in people having all four factors. (Grunert) So similarly, in this case, a survey will be conducted to weigh the influence of various lifestyle factors on chronic diseases.

Primary research will be the main source of information. The survey will then be statistically analyzed to prove or disprove the hypothesis. Conclusion In every research project, it is crucial to be systematic. It is vital to follow the principles of research practice, only then can valid outcomes be obtained. In all stages of the research process, it is important to refer to ethics and the utility of the research. The research should focus on issues that will benefit society to a greater extent than its cost.


General Medical Council 2010, Good medical Practice, retrieved 9/6/2010 from

IOM (Institute of Medicine) (2009) Initial National Priorities for Comparative Effectiveness Research. Washington, DC: National Academy Press. Available: . Accessed: 26 March 2010

World Health Organization 2005, Resolutions and Decisions, retrieved 9/26/2010 from

Jeanne Grunert, 2009, Lifestyle Factors Prevent Chronic Illness, retrieved 9/26/10 from

Wendy A.M Prosser, 2010, How a Healthy Diet and Exercise Can Help Prevent Chronic Illness, retrieved 9/25/10 from

Mike Adams, 2009, How to Slash World Cancer Rates By 90 Percent: Healthy Foods, Exercise and Vitamin D , retrieved 9/26/10 from

Phuli Cohen,2009, The Natural Hormone Makeover: 10 Steps to Rejuvenate Your Health and Rediscover Your Inner Glow

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