Clinical trial design for Medical Devices
We begin the design of your medical device clinical trial with the formulation of appropriate study endpoints. Whether you need to collect data to support an FDA pre-market submission, a scientific publication, or drive physician adoption and market acceptance, these endpoints will support the content of your study and help you to determine the appropriate number of patients and study sites, study duration and length of follow-up.
Clinical studies can also include clinical evaluations of certain design modifications or changes to intended uses for legally marketed devices.
Additionally, the appropriate clinical trial strategy is dependent on where you plan to commercialize your medical device. European medical device requirements for clinical data can differ significantly from U.S. FDA requirements, so it is important to consider all these factors early in the development of your medical device clinical trial.
U.S. Clinical Data Requirements for Medical Devices
Clinical development of a new medical device is normally conducted in two phases; pilot and pivotal studies. In the pilot phase, the goal is to establish medical device safety and to assist in design of the pivotal trial. Medical device pilot or feasibility studies are generally limited to less than 100 patients at one or two sites. After establishing that the medical device is safe in this pilot group of patients, the pivotal trial is conducted to generate data to demonstrate that the medical device is safe and effective, for a defined intended use, within a certain patient population.
To market a class III high-risk (and some class II) medical device in the United States, you will need to demonstrate that the device is reasonably safe and effective. Generally, high-risk, class III medical devices that pose a significant risk of illness or injury will require a premarket approval or PMA submission, which will include clinical data to support medical device claims.