Open Access Open Badges Study protocol

Study protocol: to investigate effects of highly specialized rehabilitation for patients with multiple sclerosis. A randomized controlled trial of a personalized, multidisciplinary intervention

Jan Sørensen1*, Anne Lee1, Brita Løvendahl2, Michael Nørgaard2, Jette Bay3, Peter Vestergaard Rasmussen4 and Finn Boesen2

Author Affiliations

1 Centre for Applied Health Services Research and Technology Assessment, University of Southern Denmark, J. B. Winsløws Vej 9B, 1, 5000, Odense, Denmark

2 Sclerosis Hospitals in Denmark, Haslev and Ry, Ringstedvej 106, 4690, Haslev, Denmark

3 The Danish Multiple Sclerosis Society, Mosedalvej 15, 2500, Valby, Denmark

4 Department of Clinical Medicine – The Department of Neurology, Aarhus University, Nørrebrogade 44, 8000, Aarhus, Denmark

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BMC Health Services Research 2012, 12:306  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-12-306

Published: 6 September 2012



Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex, chronic and progressive disease and rehabilitation services can provide important support to patients. Few MS rehabilitation programs have been shown to provide health improvements to patients in a cost-effective manner. The objective of this study is to assess the effects in terms of changes measured by a variety of standardized quality of life, mastery, coping, compliance and individual goal-related endpoints. This combination provides the basis for analyzing the complexity of MS and outcomes of a personalized rehabilitation.


Patients with MS referred to hospital rehabilitation services will be randomized to either early admission (within two months) or usual admission (after an average waiting time of eight months). They will complete a battery of standardized health outcome instruments prior to randomization, and again six and twelve months after randomization, and a battery of goal-related outcome measures at admission and discharge, and again one, six and twelve months after randomization.


The results of the study are expected to contribute to further development of MS rehabilitation services and to discussions about the design and content of such services. The results will also provide additional information to health authorities responsible for providing and financing rehabilitation services.

Trial registration

Current Controlled Trials (ISRCTN05245917)