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Southampton Clinical Trials Unit News

Care home resident Chris encourages others to take part in vital research

Published: 26 January 2024
Sue at Chris at Claxton House
Sue at Chris at Claxton House

A care home resident has become one of the first people in the country to take part in a research study happening at a home for people with learning disabilities.

Chris, 64, has been living at Claxton House, Norfolk, having moved there after his family relocated to the county. Earlier this year, he was invited to take part in a study which is testing a new type of catheter.

The CaDeT trial, which is run by the Southampton Clinical Trials Unit and funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), is testing a new ‘Optitip’ catheter which researchers hope will cause less urinary tract infections (UTIs) in people who have to use them, compared to the standard ‘Foley’ catheter.

Many patients using an indwelling catheter (which is left in place as opposed to being used as and when needed) experience problems that impact their lives. These include frequent UTIs, pain and reduced quality of life.

People aged 18 years or over who use an indwelling catheter are invited to take part in the CaDeT trial, which randomly allocates participants to use either the new or old catheter for a period of 12 months. Participants on the CaDeT trial are monitored regularly and receive monthly follow-up questionnaires about how the catheter is affecting their health and life in general.

With the help of Sue, one of his carers, and a research nurse from the NIHR, Chris decided to help the team behind the trial by taking part. Chris said:

“I'd had the same catheter since the bladder had stopped working, then Sue then told me about the trial and I thought ‘well, I'll have a go at it’ as I felt that it could help a bit with the problems involved.

Sue, who has worked at Claxton House for three years, is keen to help residents take part in research to try to improve care. She said:

“This is the best home I’ve ever worked in, it’s like a family home. We will always try to do whatever we can to enhance the lives of residents.

“It had been horrendous for Chris before as he’d been in a lot of discomfort, so when we heard about the trial, we were excited by the possibility that there might actually be an alternative out there because Chris has really pretty much exhausted all other options.”

Chris is really looking forward to seeing what results come from the trial, and so are we!

Sue - Carer at Claxton House, Norfolk

Currently, 20% of nursing community care is related to managing catheter blockage but little innovation has been made in the overall design of indwelling catheters over the past 80 years.

Julia Fromings-Hill, NIHR Research Nurse based at Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust, is working with care homes to help deliver the CADET study:

“We are so pleased that our team has been able to offer the Cadet trial to our patients because it asks the really important question “Does this catheter work better than that catheter?”.  The results of this trial should help us to make sure we are offering the best possible care to patients like Chris, and all the other people we care for who need to use a catheter.”

Chris feels other people should consider taking part: “If people do have a problem, I suggest that they go in for this trial because it could be beneficial to them.”

Sue is also keen to help encourage other homes to take part: “We know that research can help so we will always get involved if it’s possible. A lot of homes are really busy, but it actually doesn’t require a lot to take part. We have to submit paperwork once a month but it’s not a very arduous task at all.

“Julia and the research team have also been there to support us and answer all our questions along the way. Chris is really looking forward to seeing what results come from the trial, and so are we!”

At the end of the 12 month trial duration, the CADET team will assess the number of UTIs experienced by the participant, and final results will be published following the close of the trial, due to take place in November 2024.

Find out more about the CADET study .

To find out more about research happening near you visit .

This article was created and originally published by the team at the NIHR Clinical Research Network East of England.

Watch a video on the CaDeT study

Notes for editors

The Southampton Clinical Trials Unit (SCTU) is a Cancer Research UK (CRUK) core-funded CTU with expertise in the design, conduct and analysis of interventional, multi-centre clinical trials. It is part of the National institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Research Support Service (RSS) hub at Southampton University and a partner in the NIHR Southampton Biomedical Research Centre (BRC). The SCTU is based within the University of Southampton with offices at the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust Southampton General Hospital site. For more information, visit the SCTU website .

About National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR)

The mission of the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) is to improve the health and wealth of the nation through research. We do this by:

·       Funding high quality, timely research that benefits the NHS, public health and social care;

·       Investing in world-class expertise, facilities and a skilled delivery workforce to translate discoveries into improved treatments and services;

·       Partnering with patients, service users, carers and communities, improving the relevance, quality and impact of our research;

·       Attracting, training and supporting the best researchers to tackle complex health and social care challenges;

·       Collaborating with other public funders, charities and industry to help shape a cohesive and globally competitive research system;

·       Funding applied global health research and training to meet the needs of the poorest people in low and middle income countries.

NIHR is funded by the Department of Health and Social Care. Its work in low and middle income countries is principally funded through UK Aid from the UK government.

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