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Welcome to the UK Clinical Trials Gateway

Our site is here to help you find out about health and social care research that is taking place across the UK.

You can find out what 'clinical trials' and 'health and social care research' involves as well as finding out about studies that are happening right now into any condition or disease area.

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Latest research findings

from the NIHR Dissemination Centre

Intravenous magnesium can reduce shivering in patients after surgery
An infusion of magnesium, given during or immediately after surgery, reduces the proportion of patients who experience shivering in the operating theatre or in recovery from 23% to 9.9%. Shivering is unpleasant for the patient and may place strain on the cardiovascular system, as it increases oxygen use. A review of 64 trials found that intravenous magnesium was effective compared to placebo without any reported adverse effects. In the UK, frequent temperature checks and active warming are routinely used in operating theatres. Nevertheless, shivering is still common even when body temperature is normal. It is unclear how many of the trials used active warming in addition to magnesium, so this may limit generalisability of the studies to UK practice. Intravenous magnesium should be added to the options for managing patients at risk of perioperative shivering, although this review was not able to define an optimum dose or timing.
24 April 2019

Switching to oral antibiotics early for bone and joint infections gave similar results to continuing intravenous therapy
For adults with bone or joint infection, many of whom had metal implants, beginning six weeks of oral antibiotics within seven days of intravenous treatment, was no worse than a regimen delivered wholly intravenously (IV). After one year, around 14% of both groups still had an infection, showing the difficulty of treatment, irrespective of the route of administration. Although current practice suggests antibiotics should be given IV for bone and joint infections, for at least six weeks, this large NIHR-funded UK trial challenges this assumption. Participants were randomised to oral antibiotics seven days after initial surgical or IV antibiotic treatment. Using oral antibiotics has the potential to reduce complications and give patients greater freedom while undergoing treatment, and costs less. This study strengthens evidence from an existing Cochrane review of smaller diverse trials, and may potentially lead to a shift in practice.
16 April 2019

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