AN ADVANCED specialist physiotherapist in acute stroke and neuro-rehab has been awarded a post-graduate certificate in clinical research with distinction from the Faculty of Medical Sciences at Newcastle University.
Dawn Lamb, who lives in Langholm, has a special interest in patients with dizziness and has observed how complicated this symptom is to diagnose.
Helen McGahon is the associate director of allied health professionals (AHPs).
She said: “Dawn’s research shows how the assessment skills and knowledge physiotherapists have can support other professions and ensure patients have quick and accurate diagnosis.
“This can improve experience and provide more efficient use of our services.
“Dawn’s plans to carry out the initial research of the tool she has designed for first assessments of the dizzy patient in A&E at North Cumbria Integrated Care (NCIC) makes us the pioneers of this approach.
“Well done, Dawn, who is again demonstrating how AHPs can support improvements in our system and in the NHS.”
Dawn has developed a flowchart to help staff identify when a person, who has symptoms of dizziness, is having a stroke.
She has had her research into the complex area of dizziness and stroke published and has presented at the European Stroke Organisation Congress in Milan.
She is also presenting her work at the UK Stroke Forum at the International Centre in Telford in December, which is the UK’s largest multi-disciplinary conference for stroke care professionals.
The E&L caught up with Dawn at the Muckle Toon Adventure Festival’s Pumpkin Run, which she organises, last Saturday.
Dawn, who works at the Cumberland Infirmary, said: “This post-graduate certificate is the first part of my PhD in clinical research and has been paid for by the NCIC NHS Trust in Carlisle.
“My first year was spent at Newcastle University doing research design and I now start doing research in the hospital.
“It’s hard and it’s a juggle with the family but I’m enjoying it and getting my first year passed.
“If you get the research design right, it goes much more easily. I’ve had feedback on it from consultants all over the country.
“There are many different types of stroke. Some are rare; they present as dizziness and clinicians find it really challenging to spot a stroke as opposed to a normal type of dizziness.
“My work has created an assessment tool to help clinicians in A&E identify whether it’s a stroke dizziness or a normal dizziness.
“It’s very much needed which is why it’s getting a lot of attention; anything to help make it easier for staff in A&E.”
Dawn is also presenting her work at the Physiotherapy UK conference in Birmingham this weekend.