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 Timothy Pickles

Timothy Pickles

NIHR Doctoral Fellow

Email
pickleste@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone
+44 (0)29 2068 7259
Campuses
Room 510, 5th floor, Neuadd Meirionnydd, University Hospital of Wales, Heath Park, Cardiff, CF14 4YS
Comment
Media commentator

Overview

Research Themes

I work in the Centre for Trials Research (CTR) at Cardiff University. I was granted an NIHR Doctoral Fellowship in 2019 and am working on Psychometrics, patient reported outcome measures (PROMs), Rasch measurement theory and computer adaptive test in the field of Rheumatoid Arthritis. I am supervised by Professor Ernest Choy (Cardiff University), Dr Mike Horton (University of Leeds), Dr Karl Bang Christensen (University of Copenhagen), Dr Rhiannon Phillips (Cardiff Metropolitan University) and Dr David Gillespie (Cardiff University).

I have previously held posts in the Cardiff Regional Experimental Arthritis Treatment and Evaluation (CREATE) Centre and had a secondment in the School of Dentistry, which as well as research, involved teaching statistics and SPSS to BDS students, and providing statistical support to MOrth and PhD students.

Until 2019, my work in CTR principally involved being the statistician on multiple and differing clinical trials, across many varied disciplines. I have developed an interest in diabetes, urinary tract infections, rheumatology and skin conditions, as well as dental caries from my previous work in the School of Dentistry. The interventions I have focussed on are behaviour change counselling, shared decision making tools and devices/aids for appropriate antibiotic prescribing.

In my role within the CREATE centre, I was researching the use of early phase clinical trial methodology in the field of rheumatology. I had already begun looking into techniques to explore the psychometric properties of various Quality of Life Instruments, and I was fortunate to spend my MSc dissertation learning about, and undertaking, Rasch analyses, which is a continuing research theme.

I have also undertaken meta-analyses and epidemiological research, and advised PhD students and relevant staff members. I am the statistical lead for CTR Standard Operating Procedures.

Following a succesful application, I joined the 2019 cohort of the GW4 Crucible on Digital Innovation and received seedcorn funding for the GW4-PATH study.

I hold a BSc (Hons) Natural Sciences from the University of Bath and a MSc (distinction) in Operational Research and Appiled Statistics from Cardiff University.

Further links:

SOCRATES study: https://www.cardiff.ac.uk/centre-for-trials-research/research/studies-and-trials/view/socrates

CTR Blogs: https://blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/centre-for-trials-research/author/wpptep/

GW4-PATH: https://gw4.ac.uk/gw4-crucible-seed-projects-2019/ 

GW4 blog: https://gw4.ac.uk/experience-of-gw4-crucible-from-trepidation-to-triumph/ 

publons: https://publons.com/author/1193132/timothy-pickles#profile

Biography

Career Profile

2009 - 2014: Research Assistant, South East Wales Trials Unit and School of Dentistry, Cardiff University

2014 - 2019: Research Associate, Centre for Trials Research and Cardiff Regional Experimental Arthritis Treatment and Evaluation Centre

2019 - present: NIHR Doctoral Fellow, Centre for Trials Research

Education and Qualifications

2009: 1st Class BSc (Hons) Natural Sciences with Industrial Placement, University of Bath

2014: MSc (Distinction) Operational Research and Applied Statistics, Cardiff University

Teaching Profile

BDS Dental Public Health Statistics Lectures and SPSS Sessions

Honours and awards

GradStat, Royal Statistical Society, 2016

CStat, Royal Statistical Society, 2019

Travel Scholarship, ISOQOL 2021 Conference, 2021

Professional memberships

Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society

ISOQOL Member, chair elect of ISOQOL UK & Ireland SIG from October 2021 onwards

Academic positions

Career Profile

2009 - 2014: Research Assistant, South East Wales Trials Unit and School of Dentistry, Cardiff University

2014 - 2019: Research Associate, Centre for Trials Research and Cardiff Regional Experimental Arthritis Treatment and Evaluation Centre

2019 - present: NIHR Doctoral Fellow, Centre for Trials Research

Speaking engagements

Pickles T, Horton M, Christensen KB, Phillips R, Gillespie D, Macefield R, Aiyegbusi OL, Beecher C, Choy E. Patient Reported Outcome Measures for Rheumatoid Arthritis Disease Activity: a systematic review. Poster Session Presented at: 5th UK National PROMs Research Conference 2021; Jun 16-17, Virtual (hosted by Sheffield, UK). Poster 46 in https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1x3ugFB2V04osfz7KEkvKrAsCULKvYfVq

Pickles T, Ijaz T, Horton M, Christensen KB, Phillips R, Gillespie D, Choy E. Patient-reported outcome measures for rheumatoid arthritis disease activity: a systematic review. Poster Session presented at: ISOQOL 2021. Proceedings of the 27th ISOQOL Annual conference; 2021 Oct; Virtual. 27th Annual Conference of the International Society for Quality of Life Research. Qual Life Res 29, 1–196 (2020): S158. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11136-020-02626-y.

Pickles T, Horton M, Christensen KB, Phillips R, Gillespie D, Choy E. Patient-reported outcome measures for rheumatoid arthritis symptom severity: development of a computer-adaptivetest from an item bank using Rasch measurement theory. Poster Session presented at: ISOQOL 2021. Proceedings of the 27th ISOQOL Annual conference; 2021 Oct; Virtual. 27th Annual Conference of the International Society for Quality of Life Research. Qual Life Res 29, 1–196 (2020): S159-160. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11136-020-02626-y.

Pickles T, Horton M, Christensen KB, Phillips R, Gillespie D, Choy E. Patient-reported outcome measures for rheumatoid arthritis symptom severity: development of a computer-adaptivetest from an item bank using Rasch measurement theory. Paper presented at: HCRW 2020. Proceedings of the Health and Care Rsearch Wales Conference; 2020 Oct 7; Virtual. https://www.researchwalesconference2020.com/presentations/patient-reported-outcome-measures-rheumatoid-arthritis-symptom-severity 

Pickles T, Christensen R, Tam L-S, Simon LS, Choy EH. Early phase and adaptive design clinical trials in rheumatoid arthritis: a systematic review of early phase trials. Poster Session Presented at: ITCMC 2019. 5th International Clinical Trials Methodology Conference 2019; Oct 7-9, Brighton, UK.

Pickles T, Playle R, Hood K, Gillard J. Rasch analysis of the PedsQLTM 3.0 Diabetes Module. Paper presented at: ISOQOL 2014. Proceedings of the 21st ISOQOL Annual conference; 2014 Oct 15-18; Berlin, Germany. Qual Life Res 2014;23(Suppl1):304.4.

Pickles T, Channon S, Gregory J, Lowes L. Development of the social activities and independence questionnaire in paediatric diabetes as part of the DECIDE randomised controlled trial. Poster Session presented at: ISOQOL 2014. Proceedings of the 21st ISOQOL Annual conference; 2014 Oct 15-18; Berlin, Germany. Qual Life Res 2014;23(Suppl1):2110.

Pickles T, Playle R, Hood K, Gillard J, Robling M. Rasch analysis of the PedsQLTM 3.0 Diabetes Module. Paper presented at: CTMC 2013. Proceedings of the 2nd Clinical Trial Methodology Conference; 2013 Nov 18-19; Edinburgh, UK. Trials 2013;13(Suppl1):O40.

Pickles T, Butler CC, Waldron CA, Thomas-Jones E, Hood K, O’Brien K, Hay AD. Presentation, Management and Outcomes of Preschool Children with UTI Presenting in UK Primary Care. Paper presented at: GRIN 2013. Proceedings of the 15th General Practice Research Infections Network Conference; 2013 Oct 4-5; Nice, France.

Pickles T, Blewitt N, Chestnutt IG. Determinants of Recall Intervals in Children. Poster Session Presented at: BSODR 2013. 60th Annual Scientific Meeting and Exhibition of the British Society of oral and Dental Research; 2013 Sep 9-11, Bath, UK.

Pickles T, Gillard J, Hood K, Playle R. Rasch analysis of the PedsQLTM 3.0 Diabetes Module. Paper presented at: YSM 2013. Proceedings of the 39th Young Statisticians’ Meeting; 2013 Jul 4-5; Imperial College London, UK.

Pickles T, Murangwa MY, Hood K, Butler CC. The Use of Composite Outcomes in Behaviour Change. Paper presented at: YSM 2012. Proceedings of the 38th Young Statisticians’ Meeting; 2012 Apr 2-3; Queen’s College, Cambridge, UK.

Pickles T, Gregory JW, Robling R. Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial of a Psychosocial Behavioural Change Intervention on children with type-1 Diabetes: Analysis of Baseline Questionnaire Score Data. Paper presented at: YSM 2010. Proceedings of the 36th Young Statisticians’ Meeting; 2010 Mar 30-31; University of Liverpool, UK.

Publications

2021

2020

2019

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2011

2010

I am completing an NIHR Doctoral Fellowship and PhD focussed on psychometrics, patient reported outcome measures (PROMs), Rasch measurement theory and computer adaptive test in the field of Rheumatoid Arthritis.

This fellowship aims to improve treatment, management and outcomes for people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) by developing an online patient reported outcome measures (PROMs) tool for symptom severity. This will be done using modern statistical techniques, guided by expert supervision and international collaboration.

This fellowship is important because the developed online PROMs tool will provide true measurements of symptom severity over time to a person’s clinical team. This will allow treatments to be managed more effectively and sensitively to the person’s needs.

RA is a chronic, disabling, autoimmune disease that can attack the entire body, causing joint pain, loss of motion, inflammation, swelling and redness in affected areas. About 1% of the population have RA and approximately 15% of these people have severe disease. Women are three times more likely to have this disease than men, with onset most likely between the ages of 40 and 60. No cure is available, so treatment and management are key, and regular monitoring is vital.

People with RA have expressed a desire to have a straightforward online PROM tool for monitoring their own disease at home. However, whilst there are many PROMs for people with RA, they were validated using standard techniques and do not meet strict modern criteria suggested by experts. With the advent of electronic health in the NHS, an online PROM tool has the potential to transform clinical care.

Research aims

  • Determining the quality of existing PROMs.
  • Exploring individual questions and discussing their relevance with people with RA.
  • Building the online PROM tool that is in the best interests of people with RA.

Study design

The existing literature will be reviewed for relevant PROMs for people with RA and reviewed for quality. The questions from these PROMs, plus others suggested by PPI collaborators will be put to local people with RA in a survey to provide necessary data.

Once collected, the study will focus on:

  • Research Phase 1: Analyse data from relevant PROMs using modern statistical techniques to see which questions most relevant.
  • Research Phase 2: Assess the content validity in discussion with people with RA.
  • Research Phase 3: Design and build a prototype online PROM tool, including initial user testing with people with RA.

Patient and public involvement
People with RA are involved throughout the whole life-cycle of this fellowship, from helping to design the research phases, overseeing the running of the fellowship, and helping to understand the meaning of the results.

Dissemination
Results will be distributed through journal articles and at conferences, and through National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) outlets including their newsletter, webinars and ‘Rheum for You’ events, with a dissemination event at the conclusion.

I am supervised by Professor Ernest Choy (Cardiff University), Dr Mike Horton (University of Leeds), Dr Karl Bang Christensen (University of Copenhagen), Dr Rhiannon Phillips (Cardiff Metropolitan University) and Dr David Gillespie (Cardiff University).

Supervision