Effectiveness of a complex intervention to improve participation and activities in nursing home residents with joint contractures (JointConEval): study protocol of a multicentre cluster-randomised controlled trial [DRKS-ID:DRKS00015185]

Trials. 2019 May 29;20(1):305. doi: 10.1186/s13063-019-3384-6.


Background: Nursing home residents are frequently affected by joint contractures, which impacts their participation and daily activities. A complex intervention, the Participation Enabling Care in Nursing (PECAN), was previously developed and pilot tested to address their needs. Its effectiveness and safety will be evaluated in the present study.

Methods/design: This multicentre cluster-randomised controlled trial will be conducted in 32 nursing homes spread over two regions of Germany. A total of 578 residents over 65 years old with joint contractures will be included. To compare the effect of the PECAN intervention with optimised standard care (usual care and an information session), randomisation will take place at a cluster level. The individually tailored intervention was designed using the biopsychosocial model in the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) to reduce activity limitations and participation restrictions resulting from existing joint contractures by addressing barriers and by strengthening supportive factors on an individual level and an organisational level. The implementation strategy comprises a facilitators' workshop, a peer mentoring approach including a peer mentor visit and telephone peer counselling, an in-house information event, an information session for the nursing team and a training session on collegial consultation for the facilitators. The in-house information event will also take place in the nursing homes of the control group. The primary outcome is the residents' participation and activities after 12 months of follow-up as assessed using the PaArticular Scales. The secondary outcome is the residents' quality of life. A cost-effectiveness analysis (costs per additional resident who experienced a decrease of ten points in the participation or activities subscale of the PaArticular Scales) and a cost-utility analysis (costs per additional quality adjusted life year) will be conducted. We will investigate barriers and facilitators in a comprehensive process evaluation.

Discussion: We expect a clinically relevant improvement of participation and activities in residents with joint contractures. Our findings will provide important insights regarding participation in the situation of the affected individuals.

Trial registration: DRKS, DRKS00015185 . Registered on 1 August 2018. Universal Trial Number U1111-1218-1555. Registered on 26 July 2018.

Keywords: Disability and Health (ICF); Complex intervention; Multicentre cluster randomised controlled trial; Joint contractures; Participation; Activities; Nursing homes; International Classification of Functioning.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial Protocol
  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Cluster Analysis
  • Contracture / psychology*
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Humans
  • Joint Diseases / psychology*
  • Nursing Homes*
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Patient Participation
  • Quality of Life
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic*
  • Sample Size
  • Social Participation*