Factors affecting recruitment and attrition in randomised controlled trials of complementary and alternative medicine for pregnancy-related Issues

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    • Ciara Close
    • Marlene Sinclair
    • Julie McCullough
    • Dianne Liddle
    • Ciara Hughes

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    Background: Pregnant women frequently
    experience aches and pains. However, they
    are limited in the analgesics they can use, with
    many turning to Complementary and Alternative
    Medicine (CAM) for relief. However, trials
    investigating CAM for pregnancy-related issues
    encounter issues with recruitment and attrition.
    Aim: To explore factors related to recruitment
    and attrition in pregnancy CAM trials.
    Methods: Data was gathered from an antenatal
    CAM trial. During foetal anomaly appointments,
    women meeting inclusion criteria
    were invited to participate in a trial exploring
    the CAM for pregnancy back and pelvic pain.
    Numbers of women invited and eligible were
    recorded. Reasons for noninterest were noted
    and analysed. Focus groups exploring trial experience
    of participants were also conducted.
    Results: Of the 428 women invited to participate,
    376 were eligible and just under a
    quarter participated. Reasons for non-participation
    included concerns about CAM and lack
    of interest in participation in research. Other
    factors negatively affecting recruitment included
    recruitment timing, competition for participants, limited support from staff, and inadequate
    trial promotion. Factors encouraging recruitment
    included being interested in research and
    seeking pain relief. Reasons for dropping out
    were time constraints, travel issues, work commitments,
    and pregnancy issues. Several women
    in the sham and usual care group dropped out
    due to dissatisfaction with treatment allocation.
    Discussion: Recruitment in this CAM trial
    mirror those on non-CAM trials in pregnancy,
    highlighting the challenges of engaging pregnant
    women in research. Consideration needs to be
    given to strategies to reduce the burden of study
    participation during pregnancy. Women were
    not always informed about the study. This is
    common in trials due to understaffing. The key
    issue for attrition was the sham treatment was
    unacceptable to many women.
    Conclusion: CAM researchers must explore
    problems encountered with recruitment and
    attrition so that evidence-based implementation
    strategies to address the issues can be developed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationFactors affecting recruitment and attrition in randomised controlled trials of complementary and alternative medicine for pregnancy-related Issues
    Number of pages47
    StatePublished - 17 Apr 2018
    EventRCN annual research Conference 2018 - Birmingham, United Kingdom
    Duration: 16 Apr 201818 Apr 2018


    ConferenceRCN annual research Conference 2018
    CountryUnited Kingdom

    ID: 160390840