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Application of complementary therapies: Survey from Switzerland


Join the Swiss MS Society and its partners in shaping the future of Multiple Sclerosis research! The Participatory Evidence Synthesis in MS and complementary therapies (PEMS) project needs your input to prioritise which areas of complementary therapy research are most important. Whether you’re living with MS or a healthcare professional, your opinion matters. Please take 20 minutes to complete the online survey, available in multiple languages. Together, we can ensure that future research focuses on what matters most to people with MS. Join the survey now and make your voice heard!

 Complementary Therapies in Multiple Sclerosis

The participatory evidence synthesis in Multiple Sclerosis and complementary therapies research project (PEMS project) aims to enhance the relevance and access of clinical research in MS and complementary medicine. The PEMS project is conducted by the Swiss MS Registry, University of Zurich, and the Institute for Complementary and Integrative Medicine of the University Hospital of Zurich, supported by the Swiss MS Society.

What is Known?

As shown in a recent Switzerland-wide survey conducted by the PEMS project, almost every second person with MS is currently using complementary therapies to reduce MS symptoms such as fatigue, paresthesia, balance problems, spasticity and others.

When researchers study complementary therapies, they often investigate different aspects or symptoms, making it difficult to summarize the results of different studies.

Who can participate?

  • People with MS and their family or friends
  • Healthcare professionals
  • Researchers
  • Any other person with interest in MS

Why Participate in This Survey?

People with MS often use complementary therapies. Examples are yoga, acupuncture, herbal products or supplements, such as vitamin D. However, research studies may not look at the outcomes that matter the most to people with MS. As a result, research may not address patients’ needs. By taking part in this research, you will contribute to identify the most important outcomes of complementary therapies for individuals with MS. Consequently, you will play an important role in shaping future studies on complementary therapies for people living with MS

The Approach of the PEMS Project

To reduce the heterogeneity in what researchers investigate and to guide future research, the researchers of the PEMS project are developing a “Core Outcome Set” (COS). This functions as a checklist of important aspects or symptoms to measure in studies concerning complementary therapies for people with MS. It ensures that future research prioritizes investigating in what matters most to people with MS.

You Opinion Matters – Join the Survey!

The researchers of the PEMS project aim to explore for which outcome you believe the effectiveness of complementary medical procedures should primarily be researched.

Your opinion matters. If you are affected by MS or if you are a healthcare professional dealing with MS, please take part in a 20-minute online survey. The survey is available in English, French, Italian, Spanish and German. Your answers are stored anonymously. The survey will stay open all May 2024:

What’s Next?

For the outcomes that the majority of respondents consider to be particularly important, the PEMS project will systematically present the research to date and make recommendations for future research.

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