BICS is a research study into the treatment of COPD. In the BICS study we are trying to find out if flare-ups of COPD can be prevented by using a tablet called bisoprolol. Bisoprolol is a beta-blocker that has been widely used for a long time to treat heart problems, but it now seems that bisoprolol might also reduce flare ups of COPD regardless of heart problems.
To find out if bisoprolol reduces the number of flare ups we are comparing the effects of bisoprolol against the effects of a placebo ‘dummy treatment’, which looks like the genuine medicine but contains no active ingredient.
We are recruiting patients at hospitals and GP practices across the UK. You can see the locations of these in the section of this website "where can I take part". More locations will be added as the study progresses.
Patients with COPD who are aged 40 years or older, and who have had two COPD flare-ups in the past year are eligible to take part. If you would like to take part or have any questions about the study, you can contact us using the form below or by telephoning 01224 438178.
This research study is trying to find out if the beta-blocker bisoprolol reduces the number of COPD flare ups (also known as exacerbations). Beta-blockers have been used to treat heart conditions for over 30 years and is safe to use in COPD. There is some evidence that people who have COPD and who take beta-blockers are less likely to have flare-ups. In our study, we want to investigate whether people with COPD who are started on bisoprolol, are less likely to have flare ups.
What will happen to me if I take part?
1. To find out if bisoprolol reduces the number of COPD flare ups we are comparing the effect of bisoprolol against the effect of a placebo ‘dummy treatment’, which looks like the genuine medicine but contains no active ingredient.
2. Each person in the study is put into a group selected randomly by a computer (like tossing a coin). Half of the 1574 people will take bisoprolol and half will take the placebo for a year. To make sure that the true effects of bisoprolol are being studied neither you nor your doctor will know which treatment group you are in (although, if your doctor needs to find out he/she can do so).
What would I have to do?
1. Come to study appointments. We can help with travel expenses. At these appointments we will ask you to do some blowing tests and have an ECG to check your heart’s rythm, measure your height, weight, pulse rate and blood pressure, and tell us about your COPD and any flare-ups you have had.
2. Take the study tablets for a year and make a note of any flare ups of your COPD and how they are treated by your GP. Supplies of study tablets will be sent by courier to your home address.
3. Continue taking all of your normal medicines. If you need to go to your GP for treatment you should go, any flare ups of your COPD can be treated as they normally would.
You can read out more about the study in the patient information leaflet below or ask us to send you a copy in the post. You can also contact us with any questions you have about the study.
You can click on the links above to get contact information. Alternatively, you can contact the study office (telephone 01224 438178 or email firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will put you in touch with your local study team.
This project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme (reference 15/130/20) and is run by the University of Aberdeen, in conjunction NHS Grampian.
The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.