John found he enjoyed the sense of community and being of service. Elaine volunteered and felt that she got at least as much out of the experience as she gave. Jeff overcame his fear of needles so he could make a difference in a COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial.

For participants, clinical trials can offer hope — for their own health, or for the health of future patients. Here, they share their stories with the goal of giving you a clearer sense of the clinical trial experience. Their experiences may help inform you as you consider whether clinical trial participation is right for you or your loved one.

Participating in a clinical trial is a personal decision that includes risks. The study team or a study representative can answer any questions you have about participation.

Hear from someone who‘s been there

Elaine, clinical trial participant

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The staff was very upfront with me about everything. I felt really confident participating.

Elaine, clinical trial participant

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Eric, clinical trial participant

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Everyone affiliated with medical studies [is] making a difference.                                         

Eric, clinical trial participant

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Every person in a clinical trial plays a powerful role. But the decision to join isn’t always an easy one. For Jeff, volunteering for a vaccine clinical trial meant he would have to face his fear of needles.
Elaine was drawn to participate in a clinical trial after reading a post on social media. She enrolled as a healthy volunteer because she wanted to help out.
Pfizer C. diff clinical trial participant Elaine
- Elaine
When the final available chemotherapy treatment failed to stop her mom’s cancer, Shannon was already researching clinical trials. She helped her mom find a clinical trial and through the clinical trial journey.
Shannon caregiver FT image
- Shannon
Laurie’s doctor told her there were no remaining treatment options for her metastatic breast cancer. He recommended a clinical trial. She wanted her grandchildren to know she tried everything she could.
Pfizer breast cancer clinical trial participant Laurie
- Laurie
Shamika has lived with eczema since she was a toddler. When she saw an online advertisement for a clinical study for the condition, she inquired without hesitation. “I needed to try to find some relief,” she says.
Pfizer eczema clinical trial participant Shamika and child
- Shamika
Eric was fresh out of college, in a budding relationship, and eager to begin his career. Suddenly, he was burdened by symptoms of ulcerative colitis. Facing surgery, he chose first to participate in a trial.

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