Find out about our current, on-going, critical care research trials

Critical care

Trial: MOTION - Methylnaltrexone for the treatment of opioid induced constipation and gastro-intestinal stasis in intensive care patients

Research area

Critical care

Summary

We are investigating whether the drug, Methylnaltrexone, helps to treat constipation in critically ill patients.

Critically ill patients have their lungs supported by a ventilator. This is essential to keep the patients alive, but unfortunately very uncomfortable and may make them cough a lot, so the patients are sedated with strong pain relieving drugs known as opioids. However the pain killing drugs can cause constipation, and this has been shown to be detrimental to the patient.

Constipation increases with the time patients spend on a ventilator, which increases the chance of infection and decreases the chance of survival and can be very uncomfortable. Opioids can also have negative direct effects on the patients’ immune system and susceptibility to infection.

We acknowledge the importance of treating opioid induced constipation. All patients are given regular laxatives, but we often find that this is not enough. Methylnaltrexone has been shown to be effective in treating other patients on long-term opioids. We do not know if critically ill patients would also benefit from this intervention.

Who can take part?

Patients who have not opened their bowels since admission to the intensive care unit (ICU). We will have started regular laxatives, but if this does not work, we would like to investigate if Methylnaltrexone or a placebo (a dummy drug) is the best option to treat the constipation.

Study location

Contact Marie Templeton, research and clinical audit manager
Email: m.templeton@nhs.net

 

Trial: LeoPARDS - An efficacy and mechanism evaluation study of Levosimendan for the prevention of acute organ dysfunction in sepsis

Research area

Critical care

Summary

We are investigating a treatment for septic shock. Treatment of septic shock includes giving patients adrenaline-like drugs via drips into a large vein. However, we know that adrenaline-like drugs can have side-effects.

We are investigating a different type of drug called levosimendan that works in a different way to adrenaline-type drugs.

Who can take part?

Patients with low blood pressure due to a severe infection and who are being supported with powerful adrenaline-like drugs.

Please note that we are only able to include patients in the study within 24 hours of them becoming unwell.

Contact

Marie Templeton, research and clinical audit manager

Email: m.templeton@nhs.net