Doctor shares advice on managing low blood pressure and dizziness in older adults
Former NIHR funded trainee has created an animation on orthostatic hypotension (OH), supporting those living with the condition to better manage their symptoms.
Dr James Frith is a Consultant Geriatrician in the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and a Clinical Senior Lecturer at Newcastle University. He completed his PhD with the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) exploring the link between the liver and the nervous system and how this causes falls, low blood pressure and dizziness.
Following an NIHR Clinical Lectureship, he was then awarded the prestigious position of NIHR Clinician Scientist (2015 – 2020). This enabled Dr Frith to dedicate his research into non-drug therapies for orthostatic hypotension (OH); a large drop in blood pressure on standing upright, and a research topic identified as a priority by those who live with the condition.
An important finding from this research is that people often find it difficult to stick to non-drug therapies as they are often more complex than just taking a tablet. However, the research found that patient education was one of the most important factors to help people stick to treatments.
With this in mind, Dr Frith worked with people who have OH, and produced a patient education animation.
This could not have come at a more opportune time. Dr Frith comments:
As access to GP appointments and hospital clinics are hugely restricted at present, it is crucial that we support and empower people to manage their own chronic health conditions. The animation provides simple explanations for people understand the condition and how to manage it using simple, but effective, non-drug treatments.
In addition to this programme of research, the NIHR Newcastle BRC awarded Dr Frith a research grant to explore exercise therapy as a potential novel treatment. The results from this study will be available this Autumn.