PhD Studentship: Experience of acupuncture


The HTA have funded THE Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre. to conduct a feasibility and pilot study evaluating acupuncture and standard care for pregnant women with low back pain (the EASE BACK study). The study consists of three stages over 24 months: 1) Developing the care package protocol (questionnaires and focus groups); 2) Pilot trial participant recruitment of 180 pregnant women with back pain, randomization to one of three treatment groups: standard care/standard care and acupuncture/standard care and
sham acupuncture with the intervention delivered over 6 to 8 weeks; 3) Participant follow up, data entry and data cleaning, analysis of the pilot trial data to assess recruitment and follow-up rates.

The study team now seek to appoint a PhD student from a social science or health care discipline to conduct a nested qualitative study to explore the experiences of pregnant women who receive acupuncture as an intervention for low back pain. This study will take place during stages 2 and 3 of the study and will include exploring the factors that might impact on the acceptance and success of acupuncture for low back pain in pregnancy and identifying how these factors may influence pregnant women’s experiences of care for their low back pain. It is intended that a sample of patients will be interviewed taking a longitudinal, case study approach.

Supervisors: Dr Jackie Waterfield, Dr Bernadette Bartlam and Dr Panos Barlas.

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