I am an anaesthetic doctor with an interest in paediatric anaesthesia and health outcomes. Following the observation of profound anxiety and distress in children undergoing a general anaesthetic with limited high-quality and tailored preparation, I felt there was an opportunity to develop a low-cost intervention that could be used in the patient’s own home.
- Paediatric peri-operative anxiety
- Behaviour modification techniques
- Health behaviour development
My PhD research investigates the impact of a novel behaviour change intervention on children’s anxiety before ambulatory surgery. The Little Journey app is a psychological preparation and support tool designed to be used by both children and their parents, delivered in the comfort and safety of their own home before and after their operation. It provides age-tailored, immersive and interactive information through animations, a virtual reality tour, therapeutic games and coping strategy teaching.
Little Journey Trial
A multi-centre randomised controlled trial assessing the effectiveness of the Little Journey app at reducing children’s peri-operative anxiety compared to standard care. The primary outcome is children’s anxiety in the anaesthetic room, scored using a validated independent observer tool – the modified Yale Preoperative Anxiety Scale – shortened form.