Chronic disease and ageing

patient in hospital bed

In Australia, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, renal failure, dementia, and other conditions of ageing are leading causes of mortality and comprise a substantial health burden. With an ageing population, the role of nurses in lifestyle and chronic disease management is more important than ever.

Sydney Nursing School researchers collaborate with the University’s Charles Perkins Centre as part of a team that shares a determination to ease the burden of chronic diseases and ageing in Australia.

Our research

Insomnia phenotyping – what are the differences between individuals with insomnia

A large research project led by Dr Christopher Gordon is exploring ways of improving the identification of sub-types of insomnia in patients and determining therapy effectiveness. This research is being conducted by researchers from Sydney Nursing School, Sydney Medical School, Flinders University and the Woolcock Institute of Medical Research for the Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Safety and Productivity, an industry and federal government-funded initiative aimed at improving sleep health, workplace safety and productivity.

Stroke prevention research

Led by Dr Lis Neubeck, a group of researchers from Sydney Nursing School and Sydney Medical School were awarded $200,000 into stroke research prevention. The research focuses on diagnosing an irregular heart rhythm (atrial fibrillation), which causes blood clots to form in the heart and travel to the brain to cause a stroke.

What you need to know about sleep apnoea

Dr Nathaniel Marshall wrote about his research into sleep apnoea for the Conversation. Sleep apnoea is a condition where people repeatedly stop breathing while asleep. People with sleep apnoea often complain of daytime sleepiness, difficulties concentrating, and they tend to have high blood pressure. The people around them usually complain about their nightly snoring, gasping, and choking noises.

Featured expert - Professor Robyn Gallagher

Prof Robyn Gallagher

Professor Robyn Gallagher research at the Sydney Nursing School aims to help patients recover and lead healthier lives after admission to hospital for heart problems such as heart attack, cardiac arrhythmias and heart failure. Her work helps patients to reduce their risk of having further heart events, through cardiac rehabilitation, exercise and physical activity, medications, and weight management.

“I have worked in many different clinical settings, including orthopedics, cardiology, coronary care, intensive care and cardiac rehabilitation. The highlight for me is my recent work with cardiac patients as they go about adjusting to have a cardiac diagnosis and changing their lifestyle to improve their quality of life and self-manage.

“The most important aspect of my teaching is promoting critical thinking about nursing through research, data collection and analyses. I love seeing my students challenge themselves and develop into outstanding nurse researchers. My students are challenged by turning their ideas and questions about nurses into research projects that will contribute to good quality patient care.

“Sydney Nursing School has high quality courses and expert staff. I love working in the school because it has wonderful connections to all the health disciplines,” said Professor Robyn Gallagher.