Opportunities and challenges for junior investigators conducting pain clinical trials

Meredith C.B. Adams, Mark C. Bicket, Jamie D. Murphy, Christopher L. Wu, Robert W. Hurley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Introduction:Clinical investigation serves a vital role to advance treatment and management strategies for patients with pain. For those new to clinical investigation, key advice for both the novice clinical investigator and the experienced researcher expanding to translational work may accelerate research efforts.Objective:To review foundational material relevant to junior investigators focusing on pain clinical trials, with an emphasis on randomized controlled trials.Methods:We reviewed recent publications and resources relevant to clinical investigators, with a particular emphasis on pain research.Results:Understanding the approaches and barriers to clinical pain research is a first step to building a successful investigative portfolio. Key components of professional development include motivation, mentorship, and collaborative approaches to research. Many junior clinical investigators face challenges in pursing research careers and sparking iterative progress toward success in clinical trials. Pain-specific research metrics and goals - including hypothesis development, study design considerations, and regulatory concerns - are also important considerations to junior investigators who pursue clinical trails. Approaches to build toward collaborative and independent funding are essential for investigators.Conclusion:This work provides a foundation for understanding the clinical research process and helps inform the goals and plans of clinical investigators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere639
JournalPain Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2019


  • Clinical protocol
  • Clinical trial
  • Pain
  • Pain measurement
  • Research design
  • Sample size

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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