We are a ‘research active’ practice which means we participate in a range of research studies, working with a universities, trusts and private medical organisations to help enhance knowledge on how to treat conditions, prevent illnesses and form the best care across society and within the NHS. 

Current Research Projects

All trials are different and have different levels of input from the surgery and the patient. Volunteering for involvement may mean filling in questionnaires, surveys, talking to one of the research team, attending regular appointment or trialling a new treatment or drug. Patients do not have to take part in research and can decline and withdraw at any time. Patients who are eligible to participate in a research trial will be invited by letter.

Our research base is at the Yatton Surgery in North Somerset, but we are active across all sites. We are a small team but growing and want to get as many patients involved in research as possible.

Mendip Vale is one of the leading research sites in the Southwest. In 2023 we recruited a massive 1,909 patients into research studies.

If you would like to talk to one of our Research Nurses about participating in a study, or have a query about research, or wish to permanently withdraw from any future research, please email

Mendip Vale works with the CRN (Clinical Research Network) to take on and facilitate research projects of all different kinds across the year. We are currently recruiting into the following research studies:


Recruiting Children with Asthma and the best way for them to use their Preventer inhaler. This study will measure if the number of asthma attacks is different between children who take their preventer inhaler everyday (the “daily” group) and those who take it only when they have symptoms (the “symptom-driven group”).


This study aims to find out whether taking a low dose of amitriptyline soon after getting shingles can prevent the pain associated with shingles.



This trial aims to screen and treat for malnutrition. The study will undertake a cluster randomised controlled trial in primary care to determine whether nutritional intervention following screening for nutritional risk in older adults is practical, acceptable, effective and likely to be cost-effective in primary care.


The TIGER study is aiming to find out whether changes to the diet of children with eczema, based on the results of food allergy tests, improves their eczema control or not. It is recruiting children between 3 months and 2 years old with a diagnosis of eczema.


Meet the Research Team

Welcome to our research team! While our research base is primarily located at Yatton Surgery in North Somerset, we are proud to be actively involved at all sites across Mendip Vale in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. With a small yet dynamic team, we are always striving to grow and expand our knowledge and impact. Our dedication and passion drive us to make a positive difference in the world of healthcare research.

Research Outcomes


Atlantis research aim was to assess the clinical effectiveness of low-dose amitriptyline (10–30mg) for adults with IBS in primary care.

Eligible participants were aged 18 years or over with IBS of any subtype, ongoing symptoms despite dietary changes and first-line therapies, and no contraindications to amitriptyline. They had a normal full blood count and C-reactive protein, negative coeliac serology, and no evidence of suicidal ideation.

Participants were randomised to low-dose oral amitriptyline or placebo for 6 months.

Participants, their general practitioners (GPs), investigators, and the analysis team were masked to treatment allocation. The primary outcome was the IBS Symptom Severity Score (IBS-SSS) at 6 months. A key secondary outcome was subjective global assessment of relief of IBS symptoms at 6 months.

Research Findings

This is the largest trial of a tricyclic antidepressant in IBS ever conducted. Titrated low-dose amitriptyline was superior to placebo for IBS across multiple endpoints and was safe.

Primary care clinicians can offer low-dose amitriptyline to patients with IBS whose symptoms do not improve with first-line therapies, with appropriate support to guide patient-led dose titration, such as using the self-titration document developed for this trial. Low-dose amitriptyline could be added to first-line therapies already being taken by patients, as it was in this trial.


Bee (Best Emollient for eczema) research aim was to compare the clinical effectiveness and safety of the four main emollient types: lotions, creams, gels, and ointments.

Children aged between 6 months and 12 years with eczema were randomly assigned to lotions, creams, gels, or ointments. The initial emollient prescription was for 500 g or 500 mL, to be applied twice daily and as required. The primary outcome was for parents to report the eczema severity over 16 weeks.

Research Findings

We found that there was no difference in effectiveness between the four main types of emollients for childhood eczema. As such users need to be able to choose from a range of emollients to find one that they are more likely to use effectively.


Safa research aim was to assess the effectiveness of oral spironolactone for acne vulgaris in adult women.

Participants were randomly assigned (1:1) to either 50 mg/day spironolactone or matched placebo until week six, increasing to 100 mg/day spironolactone or placebo until week 24. Participants could continue using topical treatment. Topical treatments are applied directly to the skin to reduce inflammation and irritation.

Research Findings

Spironolactone improved outcomes compared with placebo, with greater differences at week 24 than week 12. Spironolactone is a useful alternative to oral antibiotics for women with acne.



DaRe2THINK is a study that aims to improve the health outcomes of patients with atrial fibrillation (AF), by reducing the risk of stroke, blood clots and potentially cognitive decline and vascular dementia. Mendip Vale are currently the top recruiters of the DaRe2THINK study in the country!


PRES stands for Participant in Research experience survey and are to patients who are or have taken part in research and can be complete by paper or online. PRES which provides valuable feedback about research trials and the research process. Mendip Vale are currently 5th on the PRES leader board.