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BMC family practice integrated GP care for patients with persistent physical symptoms: feasibility cluster randomised trial

Patel, M; James, K; Moss-Morris, R; Ashworth, M; Husain, M; Hotopf, M; David, AS; ... PRINCE Primary trial team; + view all (2020) BMC family practice integrated GP care for patients with persistent physical symptoms: feasibility cluster randomised trial. BMC Family Practice , 21 , Article 207. 10.1186/s12875-020-01269-9. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Patients continue to suffer from medically unexplained symptoms otherwise referred to as persistent physical symptoms (PPS). General practitioners (GPs) play a key role in the management of PPS and require further training. Patients are often frustrated with the care they receive. This study aims to assess the acceptability of an 'integrated GP care' approach which consists of offering self-help materials to patients with PPS and offering their GPs training on how to utilise cognitive behavioural skills within their consultations, as well as assessing the feasibility of conducting a future trial in primary care to evaluate its benefit. METHODS: A feasibility cluster randomised controlled trial was conducted in primary care, South London, UK. GP practices (clusters) were randomly allocated to 'integrated GP care plus treatment as usual' or 'treatment as usual'. Patients with PPS were recruited from participating GP practices before randomisation. Feasibility parameters, process variables and potential outcome measures were collected at pre-randomisation and at 12- and 24-weeks post-randomisation at cluster and individual participant level. RESULTS: Two thousand nine hundred seventy-eight patients were identified from 18 GP practices. Out of the 424 patients who responded with interest in the study, 164 fully met the eligibility criteria. One hundred sixty-one patients provided baseline data before cluster randomisation and therefore were able to participate in the study. Most feasibility parameters indicated that the intervention was acceptable and a future trial feasible. 50 GPs from 8 GP practices (randomised to intervention) attended the offer of training and provided positive feedback. Scores in GP knowledge and confidence increased post-training. Follow-up rate of patients at 24 weeks was 87%. However estimated effect sizes on potential clinical outcomes were small. CONCLUSIONS: It was feasible to identify and recruit patients with PPS. Retention rates of participants up to 24 weeks were high. A wide range of health services were used. The intervention was relatively low cost and low risk. This complex intervention should be further developed to improve patients'/GPs' utilisation of audio/visual and training resources before proceeding to a full trial evaluation. TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT02444520  (ClinicalTrials.gov).

Type: Article
Title: BMC family practice integrated GP care for patients with persistent physical symptoms: feasibility cluster randomised trial
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s12875-020-01269-9
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12875-020-01269-9
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.
Keywords: Cluster randomised controlled trial, Cognitive behavioural skills, Feasibility, General practice, Persistent physical symptoms, Transdiagnostic
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine > Experimental and Translational Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10113367
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