Sara Kenyon qualified as a midwife at King’s College in London in 1982, where she worked as a midwife for 18 months before taking a post in Obstetric Ultrasound. During the 10 years she worked there she pioneered midwives scanning and was a founding member and Chair of Antenatal Results and Choices –offering information and support to women regarding antenatal screening – now established for 20 years.
In 1992 Sara joined David Taylor in Leicester as the Research Midwife on the ORACLE trial, which evaluated the use of antibiotics (erythromycin and co-amoxiclav) for women in threatened preterm labour using a 2x2 factorial design. The trial randomised 11,055 women worldwide and reported in the Lancet in 2001. Sara developed the model of midwives working for the trial within a maternity hospital and facilitating recruitment. Such a model has been used by numerous other maternity trials (MAGPIE, BOOST, INFANT)
In 2002 Sara became Chief Investigator for ORACLE Children Study which successfully followed-up over 8000 children whose mothers joined ORACLE Trial. This has included leading a team of co-applicants and office staff, innovative collection of data on educational attainment, achieving a response rate of over 70% and publication in the Lancet in 2008.
During this time Sara was Group lead for the NICE Intrapartum Care guideline and successfully led a multi disciplinary group to reach consensus through many complex issues with potential for confrontation with humour and tact.
Sara moved to Birmingham in January 2009 as a Senior Lecturer to work with Christine MacArthur on the CLAHRC for Birmingham and the Black Country.
She is currently leading two RCTs
HOLDS (funded by RfPB) is a pilot in three sites – Birmingham Women’s Hospital, Liverpool Women’s Hospital and Newcastle- for a larger trial to evaluate standard versus high dose oxytocin for nulliparous women with confirmed delay in labour. This will go forward to the HTA in autumn 2011 for funding of the larger trial.
ELSIPS (funded by the CLAHRC) is an evaluation of the Pregnancy Outreach Worker service for women identified with social risk factors. Recruitment is above target and should be completed by the end of 2011, with the results following late in 2012.
Sara has a passion for evidence based medicine and currently has two Cochrane reviews (one on antibiotics for preterm rupture of the membranes and one on high versus low dose oxytocin for delay in labour). She has developed strong links with the local maternity hospital (Birmingham Women’s) and is developing a number of other trials from the areas identified by the clinicians as being of concern. She has spoken widely on both antibiotics for preterm labour, intrapartum care and labour dystocia.
She is currently leading the Clinical Study Group for Intrapartum care, co-applicant on INFANT, and on the Trial Steering Committee for OPPTIMUM, BOOST and Birth Place.