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The James Lind Alliance has supported a priority setting partnership on the surgical treatment of shoulder problems that are important to both patients and clinicians.

Working with patients to improve shoulder treatments

 

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Musculoskeletal Science at NDORMS, Jonny Rees led the process which involved both patients and clinicians working together to identify what ‘Research Priorities’ in surgery for common shoulder problems should be addressed.

The aim is to ensure that those who fund health research are made aware of what matters to both patients and clinicians, leading to better evidenced based care through targeted research.

Shoulder pain and loss of shoulder function are very common in the UK, with 4% of people visiting their GP each year. With more and more patients now referred to hospital specialists for surgical treatments, it is important to know which treatments are suitable and what actions to take for a good and fast recovery.

There are also uncertainties about which operations and techniques might be best, and when such operations should be considered over conservative treatment such as physiotherapy.

Professor Jonny Rees says of the process: "Everyone involved in this JLA process found it both a challenging and rewarding experience. Our patients were brilliant and were only too pleased to be engaged in this way to help prioritise shoulder surgery research in the UK. I am very grateful to everyone that spent time helping and contributing to this very worthwhile project".

The British Elbow and Shoulder Society, and the British Orthopaedic Association funded this James Lind Alliance priority setting partnership. The partnership was also supported by and based in the Oxford Biomedical Research Unit and Oxford Biomedical Research Centre.

The partnership identified 10 Research Priorities; you can find them here.