• Glenn Hearson

Catherine’s experience of participating in a COPD clinical trial

Updated: Jun 10, 2019


Catherine participated in the INCOGNITO trial which is a partnership between Professor Dominick Shaw at Nottingham City Hospital and Dr James Chalmers at the University of Dundee, Scotland.

What was the purpose of this trial?

The trial compared two different inhalers that are both licensed for treatment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), and monitored each participant for 6 months.


Hi Catherine. Can you begin by telling us about your experience with COPD?

Yes. Well, it was about 10 years ago now. I went to a specialist doctor about something and when I was being examined, I was diagnosed with COPD.

I wasn’t referred to a respiratory physician. It must have been 3 or 4 years later when I received a letter saying “you have COPD”. That came from the GP so I then went in and said I have very few symptoms, I do get breathless and he gave me Ventolin.

I then developed a rather nasty chest infection and from there the symptoms started and from there we looked at different treatments. I’ve only been on the increased treatment for about 4 years.

So you weren’t aware of having COPD?

No, not a great deal. Once I’ve had my inhalers, then I’m away and that’s alright.

How did you hear about our unit and research?

I think you sent me a letter but can’t remember now, it was about 2 years ago!

Have you been involved in research previously?

This is my third time I’ve been involved. First time was about what is COPD was and then the second was a drug trial but can’t remember who it was with.

What made you decide to take part in this particular trial?

I think the fact is, I’ve got a bad problem and I’m handling it well but I hope that it improves peoples’ lives with COPD. If the trials are helpful then that’s the aim of it.

Would you participate in research again?

Yes, definitely! I’m not deteriorating and I’m not improving and you don’t expect to improve. Obviously, the drugs I am on are suiting me. If there is something out there in the future then it would be useful to know!

Have you enjoyed any particular aspects of taking part in this trial?

Yes, you! You’ve been very professional and so has the whole team. And I’ve found that very reassuring that you’re not here and “it’s another day” and you are enthusiastic.

The whole team loves what we do! Do you have any advice for people considering participating in research in the future?

I think I would encourage them. There’s no harm to you and right, you might be here for a couple of hours or 3 but then that’s only once a month or whatever. If they’re retired [like me] what else have they to do!

Anything else you’d like to add before we wrap up?

My experience has been good!

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