Big Increase In Research

Big Increase In Research

The number of clinical studies and trials taking place in NHS Forth Valley has increased sevenfold in the last 15 years from 32 in 2004 to 210 in 2018. They include input into a number of national research programmes and have covered conditions as diverse as diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Crohns colitis and frozen shoulder.

One of the latest studies has been carried out in conjunction with Guys and St Thomas’s Hospital in London and NHS Forth Valley was the only Scottish Health Board to be involved. More than 170 local people with ulcerative colitis or Crohns Disease were recruited and asked detailed questions about their diet. The trial ran for a year and is now being evaluated.

NHS Forth Valley has also been part of the DiRECT study, a trial funded by Diabetes UK and led by experts at Glasgow and Newcastle Universities. It has seen local dieticians helping people with the condition lose weight, initially through an 800 calorie diet, which, in some cases, has led to remission and reduced the need for diabetes medication.

NHS Forth Valley Research and Development Officer Allyson Bailey explained: “Every new medicine and treatment starts with volunteers taking part in clinical trials and studies.  We owe our high standards of medical care to the clinicians, scientists, academics and stakeholders who design, develop and carry out research, the participants willing to take part and the diverse teams who analyse the results. Even when researchers do not reach the outcomes they might have expected, the results can still help improve treatment, care and our understanding of the various conditions”.

The pioneering work in NHS Forth Valley was celebrated as part of the recent International Clinical Trials Day which commemorates the anniversary of the first clinical trial by James Lind, in 1747, into the causes of scurvy on board the HMS Salisbury.

To find out more about clinical trials and research opportunities contact Research and Development Officers or

Summer 2019 News