What is health research?
Health research finds new ways to prevent illness, detect diseases, and test new treatments. Right now there are thousands of active clinical studies happening in Alberta. That’s a lot of opportunities to get involved in your health care, and we can only get results with your help.
What is health research doing?
Research is changing the way health care services are provided every day. Here are just a few examples of discoveries made right here in Edmonton.
Researchers created a new technique so people with severe Type 1 diabetes could stop taking insulin for a short time, making treatment safer and more convenient for patients.
A trans-cranial Doppler device shows doctors if an intravenous stroke treatment is working. Ultrasound waves determine if arteries are open and how blood is flowing.
Researchers found a new way to treat E. coli by preventing the bacterium from reaching the kidneys.
A researcher finds a biomarker in prostate cancer patients that tells doctors if the cancer will come back or spread. This way they can treat patients earlier and more aggressively.
Inspired by a complex suture pattern, one doctor develops a wound-clamping device to stop hemorrhaging, one of the leading causes of preventable death.
Researchers learned that a hepatitis C viral strain can treat all known strains of the virus.
Researchers at the Cross Cancer Institute find that combining two existing drugs doubles the life expectancy of patients with multiple myeloma.
A non-invasive, electrode-based cardiac system gives real-time access to heart data without the use of a catheter. This reduces patient discomfort and lowers the time spent gathering cardiac readings from hours to just minutes.
A surgical robot joins the staff at the Lois Hole Hospital for Women to help patients with uterine and cervical cancer. Surgeries now result in less pain, less bleeding, and faster recovery.
Research is helping advance knowledge, improve our world, and shape the future.
What are clinical trials?
Clinical trials are just one of the many ways that the public can participate in research. They answer our health questions and find the answers to today’s most pressing diseases and conditions. But you don’t have to be sick to participate: healthy volunteers are just as important to clinical trials as people with medical conditions.
“As a parent of two very young children… my voice matters.”
Laura was invited to participate in a study to improve communication between physicians, pediatric patients, and the patients’ families. At that time she realized how important her input is in guiding the health care for her children and herself. She believes that a sustainable, effective health care system doesn’t exist without patient involvement.
Explore areas where research is helping Albertans
Women’s + Children’s Health Research
Despite making up the majority of the population, the specific health needs of women and children are often overlooked. This is why it’s important for researchers to improve health outcomes for women and children in our province.
Gastrointestinal Health Research
Alberta has one of the highest rates of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in the world. Many researchers see this as an opportunity to study the causes of and seek out new treatments for GI health issues. Through their work, we can find find newer, more effective ways to treat patients.
Almost 50% of Albertans will develop cancer in their lifetime. Of those people, half will lose the fight. As Alberta’s population grows and gets older, the number of cancer cases is rising, too. We need to focus our efforts on improving survival rates and finding better treatments for cancer.
“The value of clinical research is in front of us every day. It’s up to us to really appreciate it.”
Shanine’s daughter was diagnosed with biliary atresia as a newborn and underwent a successful liver transplant at just nine months old. Shanine says, “You see that there’s no way that the clinical advances and the help that your child had received would have even been possible without these kinds of studies and this kind of research being done… You sort of want to give back.”