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Study to evaluate effectiveness of a Levitex pillow on sufferers of neck pain and impact on the rehabilitation process


Project Description

Academic Supervisor: Jo-Anne Webb (Directorate of Occupational Therapy)

Academic Co-Supervisor: Michael Dean (Directorate of Physiotherapy and Sport)

Industrial Supervisor: James Leinhardt

The studentship is fully funded and includes:

• A fee waiver
• A stipend of £15,824
• All bench fees and consumable costs
• Funds specifically allocated for conference travel

Final date for applications: 15.7.19

Interviews will be held on: Week beginning 29.7.19

The candidate must be in a position to register by September 2019

Description

Levitex foams Ltd has designed and patented a brand-new polyurethane foam technology. Following a successful independent clinical comparative study of mattresses at The University of Salford this year, along with 20 case studies of patients with varying degrees of neck pain there is an identified need to further evidence the clinical benefits of a Levitex foam pillow as an intervention for patients with neck conditions.

A good pillow should hold the head in the correct alignment, that is in the same relation to the shoulders and spine as if standing upright with the correct posture – and be tucked well into the neck and shoulder to support the head fully. The nature of Levitex foam is such that the user does not need to apply a large force for it to compress to 65% of its original size, providing the softness and moulded feel one would get from a high quality memory foam pillow. However, a much greater force is required to compress the pillow to 25% of its original size, offering firmness one might find from a conventional foam or high resistance foam. By combining these two features, case studies suggest that the foam can support the “clinical” requirements of a good pillow.

From the perspective of healthcare, too little emphasis is placed on posture and the long-term effects of a continuous battle against gravity. Furthermore, there is very little research into the relationship between what we lie on and proprioception. The average time it takes a new intervention to be realized in healthcare is currently sixteen years. Independent clinical evidence will accelerate this process to enable Levitex foam pillows to be available alongside current treatments as an intervention for neck pain.

The aim of this project is to create a study to evidence the benefits of Levitex foam pillows in improving patient outcomes for those patients suffering with a variety of neck pain. The minimum requirement being that they have suffered at least two weeks of continuous neck pain. The study will evaluate the impact of the Levitex pillow as an intervention following neck pain, evaluating levels of pain and impact on activities of daily living.

Candidates

Applicants will be expected to hold an upper second-class honours degree or better in Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy or any Health Care Profession and have an interest and / or clinical experience in postural management or musculoskeletal injury. They should demonstrate excellent communication skills through a variety of modes of communications, with a diverse range of individuals and have excellent self-management skills. Data analysis and management skills are desirable with and some prior experience of writing a research proposal advantageous.

As part of your application, please provide a CV, covering letter and outline research proposal. The proposal should include a brief literature review related to this project, with an outline of the methodology you would propose to answer the aims of the Masters. The proposal should be no more than 5 pages, single line spaced, 12-point font, Times New Roman.

For full details of student requirements and specification please visit: http://www.salford.ac.uk/ktp/industrial-case-studentships/vacancies

Enquiries: Informal enquiries should be made to Jo-Anne Webb or Mike Dean by email:



Curriculum vitae, research proposal and cover letter (supporting statement) explaining their interest should be sent to

Funding Notes

Students must be able to demonstrate a relevant UK connection whether this be a UK/EU National or an ordinarily resident for a period of 3 years immediately prior to the date of application for an award.

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