£3m to find diabetic neuropathy pain relief
A grant of £3m has been been given to a world-leading diabetes team to find the best treatment for people with diabetic neuropathy.
Currently, healthcare professionals are unclear about the best treatment pathway for those with the condition.
It is one of the biggest grants ever given to a Sheffield Teaching Hospitals research team and it will be used to look into the effectiveness of drugs given to people in chronic pain.
The trial will be carried out in collaboration with the University of Sheffield Clinical Trials Research Unit (CTRU).
Professor Solomon Tesfaye, a consultant physician and endocrinologist at Sheffield’s Royal Hallamshire Hospital, and honorary professor of diabetic medicine at the University of Sheffield, is leading the research.
He said: “Sheffield is a world leader in the treatment of painful diabetic neuropathy, and the size of the grant reflects the importance of this study. We need to know both what is the best treatment for patients and the most cost effective.
“This research will help us to find out which patients and what kind of pain responds best to which drugs. Apart from improved pain management resulting in better quality of life for patients, it might also save the NHS a considerable amount of money in drug costs.
“This trial has a potential benefit to sufferers, carers, healthcare professionals and the NHS.”
The three-and-a-half year study is being funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme and will involve around 400 people from eight UK centres.
About 25 per cent of people with diabetes suffer from painful diabetic neuropathy, which is a condition caused by damaged nerves.
The trial will consist of participants being given three different treatment pathways and keeping a daily pain diary.