International Journal of Health Research and Innovation

Issues of Ethics in Geriatric Clinical Research

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  • Abstract

    Introduction: Clinical trials made in geriatric population, regarding health issues disease require the establishment and the compliance of specific ethical principles. Purpose: o describe the basic ethical principles for clinical research in geriatric population. Methods: A literature review took place in the electronic database "PubMed", "Google Scholar" and "WHO" during the period 1989-2016. Criteria for articles exclusion were languages different from English and Greek, as well as articles in which there was no full access. Finally, 32 were included. Results: The Code of Nuremberg and later the Helsinki Declaration contributed to establish ethical principles in clinical research in humans. Regarding the research in elders, it remains ambiguous if they can be characterized as a vulnerable group. In any case, four basic bioethics principles which are needed to be followed: autonomy, justice, beneficence and non-maleficence. Some special issues of clinical trials in geriatric population are: the equal right for participation, the informed consent, the right of withdrawal without consequences, the protection of personal data and the protection from possible damages. Conclusion: In order to ensure the ethical dimension of these studies, it is required to take into account the fundamental rights and the principia of Nuremberg Code and Helsinki Declaration.