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A Trial That Aims To Improve Physical Activity and Lower Fatigue in MS Patients Needs Participants

February 17, 2016

A new MS clinical trial being led by Case Western Reserve University investigators is now recruiting 215 individuals, across 10 U.S. states to assess whether the fatigue management and physical activity interventions often provided by rehabilitation centers can effectively be offered by telehealth, through a series of teleconferences and phone interviews.

The study’s lead investigator, Dr. Matthew Plow will determine if the commonly used methods of fatigue management and increasing physical activity can be conducted remotely. This study projects to be the largest randomized, controlled trial to examine the effects of a lifestyle physical activity intervention with MS patients.

Participants must be ages 18 to 65, with a confirmed MS diagnosis and the ability to walk 25 feet with or without a cane. People who exercise more than 90 minutes a week, who are pregnant, who have any metabolic or cardiopulmonary disease that puts them at risk in a home exercise program, or who have had four or more falls in the past six months are not eligible to take part in the trial.

They must also be a resident of one of the following states: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania Wisconsin, West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois or Kentucky.

Patients will be randomly assigned to one of three activity groups, with all receiving weekly support via phone conferences:  an educational program combining fatigue management with physical activity; a physical activity promotion program only, or an educational and social support group. Over the trial’s 24 weeks, changes in physical activity levels will be measured as a primary outcome, while secondary outcomes will assess fatigue levels and quality of life.