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Abstract

Introduction

Paediatric chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is a relatively common and disabling condition, yet there is a limited evidence base for treatment. There is good evidence that graded exercise therapy is moderately effective in adults with CFS/ME, but there is little evidence for the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, acceptability or best method of delivery for paediatric CFS/ME. This study aims to investigate the acceptability and feasibility of carrying out a multicentre randomised controlled trial investigating the effectiveness of graded exercise therapy compared with activity management for children/teenagers who are mildly or moderately affected with CFS/ME.

Methods and analysis

100 paediatric patients (8–17 years) with CFS/ME will be recruited from 3 specialist UK National Health Service (NHS) CFS/ME services (Bath, Cambridge and Newcastle). Patients will be randomised (1:1) to receive either graded exercise therapy or activity management. Feasibility analysis will include the number of young people eligible, approached and consented to the trial; attrition rate and treatment adherence; questionnaire and accelerometer completion rates. Integrated qualitative methods will ascertain perceptions of feasibility and acceptability of recruitment, randomisation and the interventions. All adverse events will be monitored to assess the safety of the trial.

Ethics and dissemination

The trial has received ethical approval from the National Research Ethics Service (South West—Frenchay 15/SW/0124).

Trial registration number ISRCTN23962803; Pre-results.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere011255
Number of pages9
JournalBMJ Open
Volume6
Issue number7
Early online date4 Jul 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

Structured keywords

  • ConDuCT-II
  • Centre for Surgical Research
  • BRTC
  • BTC (Bristol Trials Centre)

Keywords

  • Paediatric
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • CFS/ME
  • graded exercise therapy
  • activity management

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