MS research at Bournemouth University

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Researchers at Bournemouth University have been undertaking a programme of research around self-management approaches for people with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) to improve every day quality of life.

MS is a neurological condition, which affects around 100,000 people in the UK. The condition affects the central nervous system and is thought to arise when a person’s immune system isn’t working properly. Symptoms can vary greatly from person-to-person and include fatigue, visual problems or difficulties with walking.


FACETS: Fatigue: Applying Cognitive behavioural and Energy effectiveness Techniques to LifeStyle

Fatigue is the most common symptom of MS and the main reason why people with MS stop working. FACETS is an evidenced-based  face-to-face fatigue management group programme for MS developed by researchers from Bournemouth University in collaboration with Poole hospital. FACETS combines cognitive behavioural and energy effectiveness approaches. It is delivered by health care professionals and provides people with MS with tools and strategies to manage their fatigue more effectively and explore different, more helpful ways of thinking about fatigue.

To date, over 200 health care professionals have attended training to enable them to deliver FACETS in their local area and more than 1500 people with MS across the UK have received FACETS. There is significant interest in the programme from a number of international MS groups and universities. Work is currently underway on creating a FACETS digital toolkit to promote quality of life of people with multiple sclerosis.

News Articles about FACETS

BU Briefing – Fatigue management programme for people with multiple sclerosis (12/10/17)
FACETS research featured on MS Society blog (10/03/17)
Two Researchers Investigate FACETS Program to Fight Fatigue in MS (22/04/15)
Successfully managing fatigue in people with multiple sclerosis (16/03/15)
Researchers develop effective fatigue management programme (22/05/13)


Mii-vitaliSe

A second project (Mii-vitaliSe) has explored a home-based intervention to help people gradually increase their levels of physical activity through using the Wii Fit. The trial project saw a number of improvements, including better balance, improved confidence and a reduction in stress. More information can be found here.

News Articles about Mii-vitaliSe

BU Briefing – Mii-vitaliSe: Using Nintendo Wii™ to increase activity levels, vitality and well-being in people with multiple sclerosis (08/03/18)
New research finds Nintendo Wii could help MS symptoms (28/09/17)


Contact Us

For more information about either of these research areas, please contact Sarah Thomas at saraht@bournemouth.ac.uk (and mention the MS research blog in your email).

Tagged:FACETSfatiguefatigue managementMii-vitaliSeMSmultiple sclerosisnintendo wii

Latest news from this project:

Key Publications (FACETS)

Fairbanks, B., Pulman, A., Dogan, H., Jiang, N., Pretty, K., Thomas, P. and Thomas, S., 2018. Creating a FACETS digital toolkit to promote quality of life of people with multiple sclerosis through Participatory DesignIn: 2nd Workshop on Human Centred Design for Intelligent Environments (HCD4IE). The 32nd Human Computer Interaction Conference (British HCI’18) 3 July 2018 Belfast.

Thomas S, Kersten P, Thomas PW, et al. Exploring strategies used following a group-based fatigue management programme for people with multiple sclerosis (FACETS) via the Fatigue Management Strategies Questionnaire (FMSQ). BMJ Open2015;5:e008274. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2015-008274.

Thomas PW, Thomas S, Kersten P, Jones R, Slingsby V, Nock A, et al. One year follow-up of a pragmatic multi-centre randomised controlled trial of a group-based fatigue management programme (FACETS) for people with multiple sclerosis. BMC Neurol. 2014;14(1):109. doi: 10.1186/1471-2377-14-109.

Thomas S, Thomas PW, Kersten P, Jones R, Green C, Nock A, Slingsby V, Smith AD, Baker R, Galvin KT, Hillier C. A pragmatic parallel arm multi-centre randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a group-based fatigue management programme (FACETS) for people with multiple sclerosis. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2013 Oct;84(10):1092–1099. doi: 10.1136/jnnp-2012-303816.

Thomas PW, Thomas S, Kersten P, Jones R, Nock A, Slingsby V, Green C, Baker R, Galvin K, Hillier C. Multi-centre parallel arm randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a group-based cognitive behavioural approach to managing fatigue in people with multiple sclerosis. BMC Neurol. 2010;10(1):43. doi: 10.1186/1471-2377-10-43.

Thomas S, Thomas P, Nock A, Slingsby V, Galvin K, Baker R, Moffat N, Hillier C. Development and preliminary evaluation of a cognitive behavioural approach to fatigue management in people with multiple sclerosis. Patient Educ Couns. 2010 Feb;78(2):240–249. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2009.07.001.

Thomas, P. W., Thomas, S., Hillier, C., Galvin, K. & Baker, R. 2006. Psychological interventions for multiple sclerosis. The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

Key Publications (Mii-vitaliSe)

Thomas, S., Fazakarley, L., Thomas, P.W., Collyer, S., Brenton, S., Perring, S., Scott, R., Thomas, F., Thomas, C., Jones, K. and Hickson, J., 2017. Mii-vitaliSe: a pilot randomised controlled trial of a home gaming system (Nintendo Wii) to increase activity levels, vitality and well-being in people with multiple sclerosis. BMJ open7(9), p.e016966.

Thomas, S., Fazakarley, L., Thomas, P.W., Brenton, S., Collyer, S., Perring, S., Scott, R., Galvin, K. and Hillier, C., 2014. Testing the feasibility and acceptability of using the Nintendo Wii in the home to increase activity levels, vitality and well-being in people with multiple sclerosis (Mii-vitaliSe): protocol for a pilot randomised controlled study. BMJ open4(5), p.e005172.

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