My Clinical Trial – A COPD Patient’s Story

by Anonymous

I was invited to participate in a research clinical trial at Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute, an impressive medical facility located at the Harbor UCLA Medical Center Campus.  It sounded so advanced, on the leading edge of medicine and an opportunity to help myself and others suffering from my disease. So I signed up after meeting the basic criteria for entering the study.  The Rehabilitation Clinical Trials Center is most impressive with state-of-the-art medical equipment and an internationally known medical staff.  The purpose of my trial was to explore the possible positive effects of combining a medicine with a supervised physical training program to see what effects this might have on breathing efficiency and performance.  I can’t share the name of the company sponsoring the study or the medication, as it is still underway, but they seem to be dedicated to improving people’s lives, and that’s OK with me.

I must say I had a small sense of smugness when I shared with my friends and associates that I had been selected to participate in a special medical clinical trial.  I felt quite special participating in this medical research project.

My study involved visiting the Clinical Trials Center three times per week for physical exercise lasting about an hour and half. I was one of several participants in this months-long study. The trial included state-of-the-art measurements of physical strength and lung function, which in itself is quite valuable to know. I exercised on the treadmill, and used other sophisticated exercise equipment under the supervision of one or more professional medical staff, including several doctors.  The research staff were not only closely following the protocols of the study and documenting all my activities but gave me a feeling that they genuinely cared about helping me.

Did it all pay off?  At the conclusion of the trial, they tested me to see what improvements, if any, there were in my physical and pulmonary condition.  In the post-trial exercise walking assessment, I improved by a factor of two and my muscle strength improved significantly!  As a result of participating in this program, I feel much more physically fit, possibly fitter than I have felt in a long time.  For me, this proved conclusively the incredible importance of exercise and has motivated me to continue this type of exercise after the trial.  If you have ever considered participating in a clinical trial, I suggest you give it a chance.  I did and it has made a difference in my life.

Furthermore, participation in this trial has left me with the sense that I am taking control of my life by doing something that may ultimately help me, and others, suffering from this disease. And that makes this all worthwhile.

  • Avatar
    Posted at 21:56h, 26 October Reply

    I’m curious about the data that goes with the statements of “walking improved by a factor of two” and “muscle strength improved significantly”. What do those mean? Did you go from walking 5 min/day to 10 min or 5 miles to 10 miles? Did your strength go from lifting 2 pounds to 6 pounds or are you benching your body weight? Can you provide the data that supports this article?

    • Avatar
      Posted at 23:03h, 10 November Reply

      Thanks for asking, Jay. Here is the information from the patient who wrote the article:

      Leg Press
      280 lbs to 331 lbs (18% incr.)

      Leg Curl
      217 lbs to 322 lbs (48% incr.)

      Arm Press
      80 lbs to 105 lbs (31%incr.)

      Endurance Shuttle Walk Test
      2.5 minutes to 7.0 minutes (176% incr.)

      6 Minute Walk Distance
      1700 feet to 1900 feet (12% incr.)

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