Video transcript: Kat's research story
What was the background to you being part of research?
In about summer of 2017 I was suffering from fatigue and swollen fingers. I noticed my wedding rings weren't fitting any longer and I had Raynaud's. So I went to the doctors and they did me some blood tests and recommended that I go and see a rheumatologist regarding what might be happening. Quite quickly after that I was diagnosed with systemic sclerosis and referred to Salford Royal (NHS Foundation Trust) to see Professor Herrick.
You were offered the opportunity to be part of a research study. Why did you choose to get involved?
From a personal point of view, I wanted to do this because systemic sclerosis is a condition where there isn't a lot of knowledge around medication and treatment. So for me, personally, it was a really good opportunity to contribute to some research but also hopefully get some benefit for me.
What did being on the study involve for you?
What it meant for me was taking a drug every day. I didn't know whether or not that was a steroid or whether it was a placebo, and then some regular check check-ups throughout the process. Which was really convenient for me because we were able to dovetail that into visits that I was having anyway.
Was it a positive experience?
I personally found a real benefit of being involved in the study. It actually made me feel better and I was suffering less fatigue and it also gave me the opportunity to have more time at Salford Royal with the research team and also my consultant which O'm really grateful for.
Would you recommend other people to get involved in research?
The whole process of the study has been a really positive one for me so I'd really encourage people to be open-minded to take the opportunity to understand the research opportunities that are available to them and participate if they think it could be a benefit to them. I can't emphasise enough that for me it was absolutely the right decision and I've felt a massive benefit from a personal point of view and a health point of view of being involved.