Asthma study to start in mid-April

Asthma study to start in mid-April

With more than 180 enquiries to date, a research project to evaluate the effect of spiritual healing on patients with asthma, funded by the Scottish Executive Chief Scientist Office, will begin in mid-April.

The study, the largest of its kind in the UK, is being undertaken with the backing of the University of Aberdeen's Department of General Practice and Primary Care.

With asthma affecting an estimated 3.4 million people in the UK, researchers at Aberdeen are currently working on the theory that some people's condition may be caused by changes in modern society. It is thought that reduced exposure to infections and a more sterile environment, has led to some people's immune systems over-reacting when exposed to allergens such as house dust. House dust is a common trigger of some forms of asthma and thrives in warm, centrally heated houses.

Local researchers are still currently looking for volunteers to take part in the randomised, controlled trial, which may help treat asthma. The team have confirmed that there is still time to volunteer but with an ongoing screening process, people need to telephone (01224) 213808 for an information pack now.

Professor David Price, General Practice Airways Group Professor of Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, said: "This study includes local GPs and a local spiritual healing practice. It will be of interest to patients with asthma, as well as doctors and nurses looking after patients with asthma. We would be very pleased to hear from any asthma sufferers aged over 16 years of age, and who are non-smokers."

Anyone interested in taking part in this important trial is invited to contact Professor Price and his team on: (01224) 213808, with their name, address, postcode, telephone number and date of birth details, or they can email: sam.knowles@abdn.ac.uk

Issued by Public Relations Office, External Relations, University of Aberdeen, King's College, Aberdeen. Tel: (01224) 272014 Fax: (01224) 272086. Contact Angela Begg.

University Press Office on telephone +44 (0)1224-272960 or email a.begg@abdn.ac.uk.

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