Rapid Eczema Trials Logo
A family of a man, woman, and child smile as they eat breakfast, the small child sits on a counter with his fathers tie around his neck smirking.


The Rapid Eczema trials research project has been funded by the National Institute for Health & Care Research (NIHR), which is the research arm of the NHS. This project will enable people with eczema to answer questions that they have about how best to care for their eczema.

By joining our “Eczema Science Community” you will help to design and conduct trials, with support from experienced researchers who will ensure that the highest standards of quality are met. Together we can make a difference to how we understand and treat eczema.

The Rapid Eczema Trials project will run several online randomised controlled trials that people with eczema can sign up for and take part in from home. A randomised controlled trial is the best way of testing different treatments or strategies as it makes sure that the test is fair. People will be free to choose which trials they take part in and if they want to help design the trials.

This new approach to running trials in partnership with people with eczema is ground-breaking and will allow us to answer questions that are unlikely to be answered through traditional trials.

Here are some examples of the kind of questions that the Rapid Eczema Trials project could answer:

  • How long should flare control creams be used for when the eczema is bad?
  • Should there be a gap between using flare control creams and using moisturisers?
  • Is it better to bathe every day or less frequently?
  • Does it help to avoid using shampoo in the bath or shower?
  • Do relaxation techniques (e.g. mindfulness) help with managing eczema itch and improve sleep?

Who are we?

Photo of Kim Thomas

Kim Thomas

Kim is a researcher with an interest in eczema clinical trials.  She is co-leading the Rapid project with Amanda Roberts.  She has had eczema all her life and is excited by the idea of working with members of the public to answer important questions about managing eczema.

Photo of Amanda Roberts

Amanda Roberts

Amanda has had eczema all her life and cared for both children and elderly members of her family who have also had the condition.  She helps run the Nottingham Support Group for Carers of Children with Eczema.  She co-leads this programme, is also equality and diversity lead for the programme and co-leads the prioritising and developing trials work.

Bright cartoon figures collaborate on a digital window.

Rapid Eczema Trial Citizen Scientists

People living with eczema all over the UK are working on this project. People of all ages and backgrounds are coming together to help work on eczema research. This includes people who have eczema, parents of children with eczema and people who care for someone with eczema. There are lots of ways that you can get involved as a citizen scientist.

Photo of Alan Montgomery

Alan Montgomery

Alan Montgomery is Professor of Medical Statistics and Clinical Trials and Director of the Nottingham Clinical Trials Unit. Alan has run clinical trials in different health conditions, including eczema. He will be supporting the Rapid project by making sure that our clinical trials use the best methods to answer the questions that people have about managing their eczema.

Photo of Carron Layfield

Carron Layfield

Carron is a Senior Research Manager at the Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology, Nottingham University and part of her job involves co-ordinating public and patient involvement activities. She'll bring this experience to the Rapid Programme and is really looking forward to working with everyone on this.

Photo of Eleanor Mitchell

Eleanor Mitchell

Eleanor is an Associate Professor of Clinical Trials. She has over 20 years’ experience in designing and running clinical trials and has worked closely with other colleagues focussing on skin research. She also has experience of working closely with patients and members of the public.

Photo of Fiona Cowdell

Fiona Cowdell

Fiona is a Professor of Nursing and Health Research at Birmingham City University. She is interested in management of long-term skin conditions and healthy skin ageing. Fiona is leading the knowledge mobilisation strand of the Rapid work, that is, making sure that any new knowledge we develop is shared effectively and widely to support people to care for eczema as well as possible.

Photo of Hywel Williams

Hywel Williams

Hywel is professor of dermatology at Nottingham and co-director of the Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology with Kim. His main interests are finding out the causes and treatment of eczema by conducting independent research that means something to patients and carers. He is also a lifelong eczema sufferer.

Photo of Ingrid Muller

Ingrid Muller

Ingrid is a Health Psychologist and Associate Professor at the University of Southampton. Much of her work focusses on supporting people and families with eczema.

Photo of Jane Ravenscroft

Jane Ravenscroft

Jane is Consultant Dermatologist at Nottingham Children’s Hospital and Honorary Assistant Professor at the Centre for Evidence Based Dermatology, Nottingham. Her research interests are in eczema, vitiligo and acne. Jane is motivated by the patients she sees in clinic and the desire to improve treatments for skin disease.

Photo of Lucy Bradshaw

Lucy Bradshaw

Lucy is a medical statistician at the Nottingham Clinical Trials Unit with over 10 years’ experience of applying statistics in the design, conduct and analysis of randomised trials.

Photo of Matt Ridd

Matt Ridd

Matt is a GP and Professor at the University of Bristol. He has been involved in lots of eczema research and has an interest in allergy as well.

Photo of Miriam Slater

Miriam Santer

Miriam is a GP with an interest in eczema and in carrying out research to help people manage their health conditions. She is also a mother of three, two of whom have eczema.

Photo of Reiko Tanaka

Reiko Tanaka

Reiko’s research group has been developing Computational/AI tools that will help eczema management and online clinical trials.

Photo of Sophia Collins

Sophia Collins

Sophia has worked in science communication and public engagement with science for over twenty years. She has particular expertise in online engagement and user-led citizen science. She developed and ran, I’m a Scientist, Get me out of Here!, and, more recently, Parenting Science Gang. She is passionate about giving non-researchers a voice in research.

Partner Organisations

Ezcema Support Organisations

National Eczema Society Logo
Eczema Outreach Support Logo
Nottingham Eczema Logo

NHS & University Partners

Nottingham University Hospitals Logo
UK Dermatology Clinical Trials Network logo
University of Nottingham Logo
University of Southampton Logo
University of Bristol Logo
Birmingham City University Logo
Imperial College London Logo

Nottingham University Hospitals Logo

University of Nottingham Logo

© Copyright University of Nottingham (2022)

National Institute for Health and Care Research Logo

This project is funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) under its Programme Grants for Applied Research programme (PGfAR NIHR203279). The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.