The tactics of large randomized trials

J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2012 Jul 18;94 Suppl 1:19-23. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.L.00189.


Single-center studies and small randomized controlled trials often provide contradictory or inconclusive results. In contrast, large randomized controlled trials are designed to definitively answer a relevant and practice-changing research question. These studies rely on large sample sizes to gain adequate precision of the results and substantial funding to support the research infrastructure necessary to minimize bias. Tactics for successfully completing a large randomized controlled trial are outlined with examples from recent orthopaedic trials.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic*
  • Orthopedic Procedures*
  • Patient Dropouts
  • Patient Selection
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic / methods*
  • Research Design*
  • Research Support as Topic
  • Sample Size