Susan is a retired personal assistant from Cheltenham who recently took part in a clinical trial investigating a potential new treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) at MAC Clinical Research.
She has been living with OCD since she was a teenager, and it has a severe impact on her daily life. OCD is a mental health condition that causes people to have obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. The condition can affect people in different ways, for Susan, she is anxious about cleanliness.
It’s estimated that around 750,000 people are living with OCD in the UK.
Things such as going to the cinema, going out for coffee, and going on holiday are tasks that Susan has struggled with. She said: “I’ve been to some great places, but I can’t remember a lot of it because my mind was elsewhere, and it wasn’t taking in what I was seeing in the moment, and I can only remember the bad things that happened.
“I don’t have many friends because I’m always cancelling, I’m always backing out of things when I’m booking something which is quite a while away, I think I can go and then when it comes to it, I just don’t want to do it.”
Despite having not met up with friends since last year, Susan expressed how having friends who understand with the difficulties of living with OCD can be reassuring.
She said: “I wish there was more understanding about OCD for people who think you can just ‘stop’. The anxiety eases [when compulsively cleaning] but even when you’re cleaning, the thoughts still keep coming back; they don’t go away.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has also had a big impact on Susan’s mental health and she gets anxious about people standing too close to her.
Susan has tried various medications for her OCD and through researching different treatments for her condition, she found the clinical trial with MAC Clinical Research.
Susan felt nervous before taking part in the trial, sharing: “I didn’t know what to expect but after the first clinic visit everything was fine. Everyone [at MAC] has been so kind and understanding.”
Following her experience taking part in a MAC clinical trial, Susan encourages others to take part in clinical research. She said: “I’m hoping that the drug will go on to work so that it can help other people to not have to go through what I’m going through and what a lot of other people are going through as well.”
Without clinical trial volunteers no new medications would be approved for use. MAC Clinical Research are still looking for people living with OCD to participate in a clinical trial. With your participation, you may be able to contribute to scientific research which may lead to a new medicine to help people suffering from OCD.
The study is running at our clinics in Lancashire, Merseyside, South Staffordshire, South Yorkshire, Teesside, and West Yorkshire.
You must: be between 18 and 65 years-old; have had OCD, or OCD symptoms for at least 1 year; and feel your current medication is not fully working. Eligible participants will receive up to £490 for their time and commitment to the study, along with reasonable travel costs.
For more information on how you can get involved, visit our website here.