The right to withdraw from participation in research is recognized
in virtually all national and international guidelines for research on human subjects.
It is therefore surprising that there has been little justification for that right
in the literature. We argue that the right to withdraw should protect research
participants from information imbalance, inability to hedge, inherent uncertainty,
and untoward bodily invasion, and it serves to bolster public trust in the research
enterprise. Although this argument is not radical, it provides a useful way to
determine how the right should be applied in various cases.