Ulster Hospital Team Selected to Lead the Way in Gastro Research

14th June 2022
Consultant Gastroenterologist, Dr Patrick Allen, Deputy Sister, Lyndsay Dawson, Pharmacist, Emma Boyle, Gastro Research Nurse, Gayle Young, Ward Manager, Erin Rosson.

A ground breaking new study is currently being conducted within the Ulster Hospital to try to improve the quality of care provided to patients living with Ulcerative Colitis (UC). ELEVATE ASUC is the first inpatient Gastro study to take place within the South Eastern HSC Trust.  The research team within the Ulster Hospital led by Consultant Gastroenterologist, Dr Patrick Allen, who helped design the study, are the only team within Northern Ireland selected to deliver this research and are working with a UK wide research team, headed by a group of Gastroenterologists from Hull University Teaching Hospital NHS Trust.

Ulcerative Colitis (UC) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the large bowel which can cause diarrhoea, abdominal pain and cramping, weight loss and fatigue. Approximately 20-30% of patients will require hospitalisation at some point in their lives to cope with a severe flare of their condition.  Acute Severe Ulcerative Colitis (ASUC) can be life threatening, so optimal management strategies are essential. Unfortunately there are considerable areas of uncertainty in relation to the treatment and management of the condition, due to clinicians being unable to personalise care for patients at present, this is because they are unable to predict how each individual patient will react to therapies and those who would benefit from early surgery or rescue therapy.

The ELEVATE ASUC study was created to try and address the need for personalised care by collecting real world data and samples from patients to accurately access the effectiveness of the investigations and assessments used in hospital settings, which are relied upon to guide the care and treatment given to patients.  The research team are hopeful that this study will lead to more personalised care pathways and improve the quality of care and the experience of patients with UC going forward.

The research team would like to mark this year’s Red4Research Day on 18 June 2022 by raising awareness of the importance of the ELEVATE ASUC study and would like to thank those patients who have taken part in this important research.  Special thanks also to the Gastro Research Team along with Ward 6A and 6B in the Ulster Hospital for their hard work and support of this important research being undertaken to improve patient care and experience.