Institute:Office of National Coordinator (ONC) Workforce Training Curriculum
Component:The Culture of Health Care
Lecture:Phrasing the clinical question
Slide content:History of RCTs James Lind (17171794), British naval doctor and surgeon, demonstrated that lemons and oranges improved health of sailors with scurvy over those who did not receive them ( Lindemann , 1999) First true RCT performed in UK in 1940s, demonstrating superiority of streptomycin over placebo for tuberculosis (Streptomycin in Tuberculosis Trials Committee, 1948) 7
Slide notes:7 RCTs have a fascinating history. It is often said that the first RCT was performed by Dr. James Lind, who was a British naval doctor and surgeon in the 1700s. He performed experiments in which he gave citrus fruits, particularly lemons and oranges, to some sailors and didnt give citrus fruits to others. He noticed, unequivocally, that the sailors who were administered citrus fruits did not develop scurvy, which we now know is caused by vitamin C deficiency. Those who did not get the citrus fruits were much more likely to develop scurvy. The first true RCT was performed in the United Kingdom in the 1940s. The trial looked at the treatments for tuberculosis and compared streptomycin [strep- tuh - mahy -sin] , an early antibiotic for tuberculosis, with a placebothis study demonstrated clear superiority for the antibiotic.