Evidence
Alert

Fewer infections with antibiotic-impregnated shunts for hydrocephalus

Antibiotic-impregnated shunt catheters led to fewer infections than standard catheters in this study, although the overall rate of shunt revision remained about the same. In hydrocephalus, a shunt is a device consisting in part of a long catheter (a tube) that relieves the raised pressure of fluid in the ventricles of the brain. It is ...

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Computerised speech and language therapy can help people with aphasia find words following a stroke

People with aphasia caused by a stroke show improvements in retrieving words when they use self-managed computerised speech and language therapy in addition to usual care from a speech and language therapist. No improvements are seen in patients’ conversational abilities or their quality of life. Aphasia is a complex language and communication disorder. It can affect people’s ...

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Group cognitive behavioural courses may reduce fatigue from rheumatoid arthritis

Fatigue can be one of the most difficult symptoms to cope with for people with rheumatoid arthritis and this study found that group cognitive behavioural courses may help. This NIHR-funded study compared six weekly group sessions plus a booster session with a single brief one-to-one meeting. Both groups also received an educational booklet. It took ...

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Online patient feedback is mostly positive — but is not being used effectively

People are increasingly reading online feedback from other patients to gauge service quality but fewer people go online to write feedback themselves. Health organisations and professionals are not currently effective at using this feedback to improve services. These findings come from an NIHR-funded study which used five research streams to provide an overview of online patient ...

Themed Review

Improving Care by Using Patient Feedback

Summary Both staff and patients want feedback from patients about the care to be heard and acted upon and the NHS has clear policies to encourage this. Doing this in practice is, however, complex and challenging. This report features nine new research studies about using patient experience data in the NHS.  These show what organisations ...

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Working in groups with ongoing support is valued by people with severe obesity trying to lose weight

People with severe obesity, a BMI of 35kg/m² or more, value the support and motivation they get from weight management programmes that include group-based interventions. However, commissioners and service managers should consider how to maintain adequate support and motivation once programmes end. Although previous studies have assessed the impact of non-surgical weight management programmes for ...

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MRI and ultrasound scans are both helpful in assessing Crohn’s disease; MRI is slightly more accurate

Two types of scan, MRI and ultrasound, work well when used for staging and monitoring Crohn’s disease. MRI is more accurate. Researchers compared a form of magnetic resonance (MR) imaging that includes an oral contrast agent, with ultrasound scans. They aimed to see which was better able to detect the presence and extent of active ...

Collection

My Signals - Patients, 2019

In My Signals, health and social care staff and service users tell us what research is important to them and why they feel others need to know about it. In this collection, we asked seven members of the public to tell us which Signals have interested them most and explain why they feel the findings ...

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Voucher rewards do not reduce frequency of cannabis use or relapse in people with early psychosis

Contingency management - the use of positive reinforcement in the form of supermarket vouchers to shape behaviour - makes no difference in the frequency of cannabis use or relapse rates in those with early psychosis. Although psychotic symptoms initially decrease, these changes are not sustained over the longer term and are no better than with ...

Alert

Twenty mph speed zones reduce the danger to pedestrians and cyclists

Introducing 20mph speed zones reduces road traffic accidents, including those suffered by pedestrians and cyclists. Speed zones use physical obstacles such as road narrowing, speed bumps and chicanes, whereas speed limits only use signs and lines. The evidence was inconclusive on whether limiting speed to 20mph alone was effective, without the traffic calming. There was ...

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