Clinical Research Glossary

observational study observational study


A study that collects health information about study participants without giving a treatment.

Example of observational study in a sentence

In an observational study, data will be collected about each participant but no one will be assigned to get a study treatment.

More Info

For example, a study to see whether those who smoke cigarettes report higher rates of lung cancer than those who do not would be an observational study.

Data are collected using methods like surveys and lab tests, as well as from other sources like medical records and historical datasets.

Other info to think about when joining a study

If you enroll in an observational study this means data will be collected about you but no study treatment will be assigned.

You may want to ask how the research team will collect data from you during your time in the observational study.

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