Real time: Web-based data system for CTs

Recruitment was on time; results were quick

A new web-based data management system serving clinical research has improved data collection and accuracy through an ongoing data collection and analysis process.1 In a study of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) patients, the new approach helped produce on-time recruitment, quick results and analysis, and low error rates and missing data, says Richard Buchsbaum, senior data manager at the statistical analysis center, biostatistics department of Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University of New York, NY.

The process resulted in less than 0.7% errors on submitted forms, and data were available within 48 hours of when an event occurred. Also, an analysis data set was produced nine days after the final patient visit. After years of working on a 24-hour basis in posting financial information and numbers, Buchsbaum found it astonishing to move to a field where people were expected to wait for months or years before analyzing data. "It's much easier to approach something in real time," he says.


  1. Buchsbaum R, Kaufmann P, Barsdorf AI, et al. Web-based data management for a phase II clinical trial in ALS. Amyotroph Lateral Scler. 2008;9:1-16.