A new drug-free approach for people with painful diabetic neuropathy: The NeuOst study

Do you live with diabetes and experience nerve pains in your feet? The NeuOst Study is now recruiting people like you! Find out below how to take part.


About the project

Trial Recruitment Website image NeuOst (120 x 140 mm).pngPeople with diabetes and associated nerve damage (diabetic peripheral neuropathy) lack good treatment options. Pain associated with this condition can be severely debilitating and lead to sleep problems and other limitations. Unfortunately, available drug treatments for neuropathic pain are not very effective or come with side effects. We are exploring a new drug-free approach built on manual therapy, exercises, and pain management strategies: Welcome to the NeuOst project!

Osteopaths mainly treat people with pain, often back pain or injuries. Apart from being experts in pain management, they also provide exercise programmes and lifestyle advice. We are exploring if osteopaths can successfully care for people with painful diabetic neuropathy.

In a first project stage, we have spoken to people with diabetes and neuropathy as well as osteopaths with experience in their treatment. We did so because the potential end-users are at the heart of our work; and we learned a lot about what might be useful for patients and what might be difficult. We have also teamed up with expert clinicians in diabetes management, exercise, and psychological pain management to design the new treatment programme. An international, high-profile collaboration with experts from King’s College London, Oxford University, Imperial College, and many more!

During the current stage, we are running a small clinical trial. To do so, we trained qualified osteopaths in the NeuOst intervention. In the clinical trial, we are testing if this can be an acceptable treatment for people with painful diabetic neuropathy and if we could run a larger study later on. 


Getting involved

Our clinical study at the University College of Osteopathy (London) is now recruiting patients!

Do you experience pain in your feet due to diabetes or pain from a condition called "diabetic neuropathy"? If that is the case, we invite you to join the NeuOst research study.

In this study, we want to learn how patients like the NeuOst treatment and if a larger study is possible. You would be part of a smaller test group before we do a bigger study.

Being part of this study takes about 16 weeks. At their first visit, participants will be assigned to one of three groups: The new treatment, a similar one for comparison, or to continue your usual medical care only and have no further visits. Patients in the first two groups will have up to 5 treatment visits, and there will be two phone calls for assessments for everyone a few weeks after that. The treatments of this study will be given by fully qualified and registered osteopaths with specialist training for this study.

The study happens at the University College of Osteopathy clinic, in Southwark in central London (118 Southwark Bridge Road, London SE1 0BQ). The clinic is comfortable and easy to reach.

We will pay for your travel (up to £11.40 per visit) and give you £15 for each assessment to thank you for your time (up to £60).

If you are interested, we will give you more information and a short 10-20 minute call you to see if you qualify for this study.

To learn more or schedule a call, please contact the study team at 07523629286 or email David.Schmidt@uco.ac.uk

Your personal information will be treated as private. This study got approval from UCO Research Ethics Committee and follows UK rules.

We hope you will consider joining this research study to help improve the lives of people with diabetes and nerve pain.


Contact us!

If you are interested in taking part or would like to find out more, please contact Dr David Hohenschurz-Schmidt who is running this study.

Email: David.Schmidt@uco.ac.uk

Phone: 07523629286.

You can also sign up to the NeuOst Newsletter  to stay up to date with the project.


Governance and Ethics

This research is led by Dr David Hohenschurz-Schmidt, osteopath and pain researcher at University College of Osteopathy and at Imperial College London. The project sponsor is the University College of Osteopathy, represented by Steven Vogel, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research).

The project is kindly supported by funding from The Osteopathic Foundation, the Alan and Sheila Diamond Charitable Trust, and the Society for Back Pain Research.

The NeuOst trial is overseen by an independent trial steering and data and ethics monitoring committee, including independent experts and a patient partner. All processes and materials undergo formal review by the University College of Osteopathy Research Ethics Committee.

Privacy notice

The UCO is currently progressing plans to merge with AECC University College from 1 August 2024. During and up to this time UCO will start to share and transfer the data it holds about its Staff, students, patients, research participants and alumni with AECC UC in preparation for the completion of the merger. Please see our Policies, Procedures and Privacy page for more information and a copy of AECC UC's Privacy notice for research participants.