Randomized Controlled Trial
Randomized Controlled Trial or (RCT) design randomly assigns participants into an experimental group or a control group. As the study is conducted, the only expected difference between the control and experimental groups in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) is the outcome variable being studied.
In this type of study, participants are divided by chance into separate groups that compare different treatments or other interventions. Using the chance to divide people into groups means that the groups will be similar and that the effects of the treatments they receive can be compared more fairly. At the time of the trial, it is not known which treatment is best.
- Easier to blind/mask than from observational studies
- Good randomization washes out any population bias
- Populations of participating individuals are clearly identified
- Results can be analyzed with well known statistical tools
- Does not reveal causation
- Expensive in time and money
- Loss to follow-up attributed to treatment
- Volunteer biases: the population that participates may not be representative of the whole
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