Clinical trials

The scleroderma department boasts an active clinical trials unit which runs local, national and international clinical trials. This allows us to offer many of our patient’s access to cutting edge experimental treatments which are otherwise not available. Find out about participating in a trial.

We have had wide experience over the last 15 years with clinical trials in scleroderma and its various manifestations (skin disease, lung disease, digital ulceration, Raynaud’s phenomenon) and in pulmonary hypertension, where we have participated in most of the landmark clinical trials.

Our clinical trials unit is an integral part of the rheumatology and pulmonary hypertension departments. Some of our studies are early “first time in man” studies but most are part of large multi-centre randomised trials. Not all our trials involve medications – some of the studies are observational, in which information is gathered but no new experimental therapy is involved. We also trial simple things such as insoles for patients with painful feet!

Our rheumatology unit, led by Professor Christopher P Denton, is a world renowned centre of excellence for care of patients with scleroderma and connective tissue diseases. This service was initially created by Dame Carol Black, past President of the Royal College of Physicians. It is the largest of its kind in the world and there is a large basic science research program that sits alongside our clinical trials unit.

Our pulmonary hypertension unit is a nationally designated centre, with satellite clinics in Dublin, Bath, Plymouth and Portsmouth, providing care for patients with pulmonary hypertension. Dr Gerry Coghlan, the service lead, is an internationally recognised leader and author in the field.

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