Children's Hospital Colorado
Advances and Answers in Pediatric Health
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How to Enroll in Research


A healthcare provider and their pediatric patient smile at each other.

How can I enroll my child in a clinical trial?

To be enrolled in a clinical trial at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, patients and families must agree to participate, and the patient must meet specific eligibility requirements.

What are protocols?

Clinical trials have treatment plans called protocols. To help ensure the most accurate results and findings, all patients on a clinical trial at all institutions must receive the same treatment.

Clinical trial protocols for children often are more aggressive than adult protocols, with higher dosages of chemotherapy given at more frequent intervals.

What can we learn from clinical trials?

If your child participates in a clinical trial, data is submitted and analyzed throughout the study. Once the trial is complete, statisticians analyze data and decide which protocol is best for a specific disease. As a result, that therapy then becomes the standard treatment for children with that disease. Learn more about our research for cancer and blood disorders.

Why participate in a clinical trial?

Over the years, clinical trials have made tremendous strides in improving outcomes for children with cancer. In fact, Children’s Colorado’s survival rates correlate with the level of participation in clinical trials.

Younger children are much more likely to be enrolled in clinical trials, and research shows that younger children have better outcomes. For example:

  • 60% of infants to 4-year-olds with cancer are enrolled in clinical trials worldwide, as opposed to just 10% of adolescents 15 to 19 years old.
  • Just 22% of 15- to 19-year-olds are treated in pediatric facilities such as a children’s hospital or even at an adult hospital that participates in clinical trials.

Clinical trials for adolescents and young adults

There is a lack of improvement in survival for young adolescents and adults as compared to younger children, which appears to be directly related to enrollment in clinical trials. To decrease the disparity, Children’s Colorado is opening more clinical trials to adolescents and young adults; there is even a trial for patients up to age 50. Extensive research supports that it is better for a 16-year-old to come to Children’s Colorado for treatment than to go to an adult hospital.