Intended for healthcare professionals

Minerva Minerva


BMJ 1999; 319 doi: (Published 18 September 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:794

Pregnant women asked to take part in clinical trials may feel the pressure of two conflicting duties: a protective duty to the fetus and also a desire to be a good citizen when asked to participate in research (British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1999;106:892-7). Recruitment to placebo controlled trials seems especially difficult, and as always time spent in discussion and explanation is not wasted.

Survival times have increased for many cancers, a trend that affects the relatives who are expected to provide emotional and practical support for patients (Cancer 1999;86:577-88). A study in the Netherlands of 181 patients with colorectal cancer found that the caregivers were most likely to gain satisfaction if they were involved explicitly and continuously. Those with high levels of education derived less self esteem from providing care than did people with less education.

Does cannabis impair driving? Most people would assume that it does, but there is little evidence. Some persuasive data have come from research in Ontario (Canadian Journal of Public Health 1999;90:260-3). A telephone survey of motorists found that only 2% had driven while under the influence in the past year, but cannabinoids were found in 14% of drivers injured in accidents

A survey of injecting drug users …

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