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Understanding the epidemiology and characteristics of Chronic Pain in patients with Chronic Kidney Disease

Project Description

Chronic pain is more prevalent in patients with CKD compared with the general population. However, most of the evidence is limited to patients with end stage renal disease receiving haemodialysis with over 60% affected by moderate to severe pain. Suboptimal pain control is associated with poor quality of life, depression and reduced long-term survival. Achieving adequate pain control is challenging due to the side effects of medicines used and potential for dependence or abuse. This is further complicated in patients with CKD with many analgesic options contraindicated or likely accumulate.

The aim of this project is to improve the understanding of this currently understudied area. The initial part of the project will involve support and training in carrying out a systematic review of the research area. The student will examine the prevalence of chronic pain in patients with CKD ranging from mild to severe (requiring dialysis). Changes in prescribing patterns and trends of both opioid and non-opioid medication prescribing will be compared to patients without CKD. This epidemiological work will be performed through analysis of linked routinely collected datasets. The student will develop skills in data management and statistics.

A subset of patients with CKD will be examined in greater detail to order to further understand their pain phenotype. This will be carried out using internationally recommended methodology with training in the use of psychophysical testing.

The student will be encouraged and funded to carry out modules from the well-established Masters of Public Health run by the University of Dundee.

This project will appeal to students with cross-disciplinary interests in renal disease, pain, informatics and epidemiology.

This project will be based at the University of Dundee’s School of Medicine, with a proposed start date of 1 October 2019. Please contact Dr Samira Bell with any enquiries ()

To apply please send a cover letter, curriculum vitae and two references to:

Funding Notes

Funding is provided for up to three years and includes a stipend of approx £15,000 per annum and university PhD fees at current UK/EU rates.

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