Current Research projects
Getting involved in Cardiac Research
Our non-covid research projects have started again. We have been working very closely with the clinical team, who have also now restarted their outpatient work. A risk assessment has been carried out in the department, to ensure that patients are kept safe at all times. We hope these actions will reassure patients that attending the hospital is safe.
One of our projects is looking for patients who have been admitted to hospital with a heart attack. If this does happen to you the research team may come and speak to you about taking part. If you agree and are eligible you will be randomised to either the normal care pathway or to a rapid pathway. The study wants to find out if it is better to treat people with this condition faster than is current practice. You can read more about this study here.
If you have heart disease, are NOT diabetic, and are slightly over weight, you may be suitable for this trial. To learn more please contact the study team. The link to more study information can be found here.
Patients who attend for a stress echo are asked if we can share the information collected during the scan, with researchers at Oxford University. The aim of the study is to develop artificial intelligence solutions for image interpretation. This study is now partnered with the British Society of echocardiography, in the first ever such partnership.
Pacific – AF
We have not yet started recruiting for this trial, but expect to do so very shortly. To be eligible you will have been diagnosed with Atrial Fibrillation (irregular heart beat). People with this condition will usually be prescribed a blood thinner. This study compares a new blood thinner against existing ones over a three month period. Study details can be found here.
Safety Information when taking part in Research Projects
We will book a taxi for patients who do not wish to drive to the hospital. The company we use have been assessed for their safety and hygiene measures and we are satisfied they meet our standards. In addition we will supply patients with an FFP2 mask for the journey as an additional precaution. We will meet patients at the lift and escort them straight to our room. The room, which has always been cleaned between patients anyway, is deep cleaned between each patient. Appointment times are spaced so that the room has been aired between visits. Chairs have been positioned to ensure social distancing can be maintained. All equipment that we felt could not be deep cleaned has been replaced with that which can. We are sorry if the chairs are less comfy now.
Staff working in research train in Good clinical practice, ensuring the rights and safety of everyone taking part.
In addition, each study has its own specific training. Before the study starts, this training has to be completed by everyone on the study team. Then we can be sure everyone understands the procedures involved.
Research Projects in general
Research projects have been in the news an incredible amount recently. The drive to find a new vaccine and the papers being published about the illness show just how much work is done. While the pandemic has pushed research into the headlines, this activity is going on behind the scenes all the time. Everyone of the tablets you take has undergone a vigorous testing process. It is the treatments of tomorrow that we are learning about today.
An ethics committee and the Health Research Authority (HRA) approves all research in the UK. Before starting a research project, the local Research and Development office must also give their permission. Patients frequently enjoy taking part in research, with many coming back to do another study!
When taking part in a research project you can drop out from a study at any time, should you change your mind. if you want to learn more please get in touch. We will explain exactly what taking part will involve and will give you plenty of time to discuss the study with your family.
We look forward to hearing from you soon
We are taking part in the Evarest trial co-ordinated by a research team at Oxford University. Patients taking part in the trial give their permission for us to use their pictures. We then send the pictures taken during their heart echo test to the team at Oxford. Firstly we remove everything that could identify someone and the pictures are made completely anonymous. Also we send anonymous information about their health including history about their family and other risk factors such as diabetes and smoking.
Without the hard work of our team the study could not have been done. Forming our team wereSenior chief physiologists, Reinette Hampson and Chris Kinsey (not pictured) along with Ashish Patel and Alkida Bucaj. Ashish is a sonographer in the research department. He joined us recently, with this being his first research project. Alkida is one of our research nurses who helped with the study. As a result of this joint effort 300 patients were recruited!
All members of staff working in research train in “Good clinical practice“, ensuring the rights and safety of everyone taking part.
In addition, each study has its own specific training. This has to be completed before a study starts because we have to be sure everyone understands the procedures. All studies have a local Principal Investigator, who takes responsibility for the study at the site. For this study this is Prof Senior. The Chief Investigator for this study is Prof Leeson at Oxford University, who oversees all study sites in the country.
The trial aims to help develop Artificial Intelligence analysis to help us understand the images we see with Ultrasound. Currently, there can be a difference of opinion about these images so we hope this will be solved by this technique. This is very much a growing field in research at the moment, and it should lead to more accurate analysis of heart images in the future. More details can be found on the Evarest study website.
All research is approved by an ethics committee, and the Health Research Authority (HRA). Permission for all research to be carried out in the hospital is given by the local Research and Development office. It is very rewarding to take part with many patients coming back to do a second study!
In all studies you are free to drop out at any time, so if you are interested please get in touch.