The NPEU Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) has been awarded full CTU registration by the UK Clinical Research Collaboration (UKCRC). The Review Committee noted that the application submitted for the 2017 registration call “provided clear evidence of operational experience in the design and delivery of large scale multicentre clinical trials.” The committee concluded “a strong application had been presented from a very good free standing unit which met the criteria for Full Registration”. Our congratulations go out to the entire NPEU CTU team.
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NPEU Researchers to present at the Society for Social Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting in Manchester
NPEU Researchers Claire Carson, Mary Kroll, Yangmei Li, Charles Opondo and Maria Quigley will be at the Society for Social Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting in Manchester on 6-8th September 2017. Their presentations will cover a range of topics including: the prevalence of births after fertility treatment, ethnic variations in unexplained infant death and infant mortality, and father involvement and its effect on mental health outcomes in children.
If you attend the conference, please come and say hello.
Access and quality of maternity care for disabled women during pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period in England: data from a national survey
The number of disabled women choosing to become mothers is growing. However, stigma still exists about such women’s capabilities. Healthcare professionals may be concerned that these women will not be able to cope with pregnancy and motherhood.
The findings indicate some gaps in maternity care provision for these women relating to interpersonal aspects of care: communication, feeling listened to and supported, involvement in decision making, having a trusted and respected relationship with clinical staff. Women from all disability groups wanted more postnatal contacts and help with infant feeding.
You can read the full paper in the BMJ Open.
Poppi investigators Dr Rebeccah Slater and Dr Fiona Moultrie recently featured in a BBC Radio 4 programme entitled ‘From Agony to Analgesia’. The episode, ‘Seeing Pain’, was broadcast on 16th August 2017 and explored current research in the field of pain, including areas such as pain measurement in premature babies, phantom limb syndrome and chronic pain. Dr Slater and Dr Moultrie explain current approaches used to measure pain in babies, and the possibility of using brain activity as a new measure of pain. In particular, they discuss how pain could be determined specifically in premature babies in the context of the Poppi trial. The full radio programme can be accessed at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08r1tsx#play.
New research has identified 10 core outcomes that key stakeholders consider most important in determining whether treatment of children with Hirschsprung’s disease (HD) has been successful. This research, titled the NETS¹ᴴᴰ study, has been published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, and was conducted by NPEU researchers Ben Allin, Marian Knight and Jenny Kurinczuk and consultant paediatric surgeons Gregor Walker, Tim Bradnock and Simon Kenny. The study team worked with around 150 stakeholders including people with HD, parents of children with HD and healthcare professionals managing children with HD. Together they developed a HD core outcome set (COS) of 10 outcomes, which includes measures for mortality, quality of life, bowel function and unplanned reoperation.
HD is a rare disorder present at birth in which the nerves within the bowel are not properly developed. Whilst there are many ways to treat HD, no gold standard management strategy has been identified. Use of this HD COS can reduce the variability of reported outcomes of HD, making it easier to identify gold standard treatments for children with HD. You can read the published research in full here. Further research on the impact of different surgical interventions on the HD COS will begin in September 2017.
Early labour is usually a slow process during which women, especially if it is their first baby, may feel distress and anxiety, and lose confidence in their ability to cope.
NPEU researchers Maggie Redshaw and Jane Henderson have published the findings of a mixed methods study exploring how women from different backgrounds and cultures differed in their experience of early labour care, using survey data collected in 2014.
They found that women from Black and minority ethnic groups reported greater worry about early labour, but most women who contacted the hospital at the start of labour perceived the advice received as helpful. Many women reported that not being allowed to come into hospital or to stay in hospital if they were not thought to be in active labour was very distressing.
You can read more about the findings of this study in the BMJ Open.
In an editorial published this week, Marian Knight and Charlie Foster highlight new evidence which provides reassuring information about the safety of physical activity in pregnancy. The evidence suggests that diet and physical activity interventions can help control weight gain.
Read the editorial, which is published in the BMJ.
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