BU and AECC Chronic Back Pain Project

Bournemouth University and the Anglo European College of Chiropractic (AECC) are to fund a project to investigate chronic back pain.

Following a successful pilot study, the collaborative project will see both institutions joint-fund a PhD studentship to investigate the global problem of chronic back pain. Chronic back pain is a multifaceted condition for which there is no one cause or treatment.

The aim of this PhD studentship is to explore links between self-rated health, sensory perception and function – or how we perceive our pain and how our body responds to this perception.

Beliefs, memories and psychosocial factors relating to chronic back pain have previously been explored, but there is less evidence relating to the understanding of sensory perception (the way our brain interprets signals from our nervous system).

The project aims to influence future knowledge in preventing and managing back pain, resulting in improving outcomes for those with back pain and cost savings for health care, reducing time away from work.

Dr Carol Clark, Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy at Bournemouth University and project lead, said, “We are excited to be continuing the collaboration between BU and AECC in the field of long term back pain. This project will provide insights into pain perception which will influence treatments in the future.”

As well as Dr Carol Clark, the project will include input from Dr Sharon Docherty (Biologist, AECC) and Dr Neil Osborne (Chiropractor, AECC).

Dr Sharon Docherty, Special Projects Coordinator at AECC, said, “We’re really excited about this opportunity to carry the project forward and we’re hoping it will unveil some interesting insights into chronic pain and how it affects people’s lives.”

If you are interested in finding out more about the PhD studentship, please contact Dr Carol Clark (cclark@bournemouth.ac.uk) or Dr Sharon Docherty (sdocherty@aecc.ac.uk).

Science presenter & chiropractic leader get BU Honorary Doctorates

Scientist and television presenter Professor Alice Roberts and international chiropractic leader Dr Kenneth Vall have received Honorary Doctorates from Bournemouth University.

They both received their awards at the graduation ceremony for students from the School and Health and Social Care.

Alice is anatomist, author and broadcaster, well known for presenting programmes including Coast and Digging for Britain – which have featured BU academics and research.

She said she was pleased to be back at BU and honoured to be receiving the honorary Doctor of Science award.

DSC_7408“It’s an absolute delight and an honour to be receiving an honorary doctorate, and I’m really pleased to be here at Bournemouth University,” she said.

“I’ve made friends with a lot of Bournemouth University academics over the years and I’ve interviewed them for all sorts of different programmes on the BBC, so it was really nice to come here and catch up with those colleagues today.”

She added: “I’m absolutely delighted to be graduating with a lot of students in health disciplines, who are already out there working and helping people and improving people’s lives.”

Also receiving an Honorary Doctorate at the School of Health and School graduation ceremony was Dr Kenneth Vall, an international leader in chiropractic.

Kenneth, who became an honorary Doctor of Education at the ceremony, was Principal of the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic (AECC) from 2004 to 2012 and helped consolidate its reputation as one of Europe’s foremost chiropractic educational institutions – as well as building strong links between the college and BU.

He said receiving the Honorary Doctorate was one of the proudest moments of his life.

“I’ve been involved in education and in caring for patients all my working life and this is the premiere accolade, so I’m delighted. It is one of the proudest moments in my life so far.

1312113730001“I would always advocate Bournemouth University to young people but I think that my institution, which I have now left, will seek a relationship which is long-lasting. There is good synergy, particularly with the School of Health and Social Care, and I think that relationship is extremely valuable.”

His advice to the graduates was to look after themselves, as well as their patients.

“They should obviously care for their patients, and I’m sure they will, but they should also care for themselves and look after their own health.

“Exercise, have a good diet and create good habits that you live through for the rest of your life and the work will be so much more rewarding, because you set an example to your patients.”

More than 5,000 graduates from across Bournemouth University were handed their degree certificates in six different ceremonies at the Bournemouth International Centre.

Professor John Vinney, vice-chancellor of Bournemouth University, said: “Bournemouth University takes great pride in our Honorary Graduates.

“We recognise people who have excelled in their chosen field who will act as inspirational role models, both for our graduates and their families at the awards ceremonies and for our whole student body in the coming years.”