Reflections on the TEAM trial: why clinical care and research should be reconciled

Can J Neurol Sci. 2011 Mar;38(2):198-202. doi: 10.1017/s0317167100011343.


The current clinical and research environment is one that renders any true enquiry into the value of commonly performed surgical acts practically impossible. Drawing from the recent failure of Trial on Endovascular Aneurysm Management (TEAM), a trial on the endovascular management of unruptured intracranial aneurysms, I attempt to identify some principles that sustain the current ways of doing clinical research that have paradoxically become major obstacles to trials that aim to assess the potential benefit or harm due to interventions as currently practiced. Clinical research and practice must coalesce into "clinical care trials" if we are to provide patients with optimal, prudent care in the context of uncertainty. This may require a major change in the mentalities of clinicians, scientists, and patients alike, and the adoption of novel strategies for public agencies to support the integration of clinical research and care.

MeSH terms

  • Aneurysm / surgery*
  • Biomedical Research*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic / methods*
  • Endovascular Procedures / methods*
  • Humans