A randomised controlled trial to evaluate whether use of intrapleural urokinase aids the drainage of multi-septated malignant pleural effusion compared to placebo

How can we help cancer patients reduce breathlessness caused by fluid around the lungs?

What is this study about?

Many people with cancer have fluid which collects between the lung and the chest wall. This often results in breathlessness. Doctors usually treat this by inserting a chest tube to drain the fluid, and then sealing the cavity – this is called pleurodesis.

In some patients, the fluid becomes divided into many pockets. This makes it difficult to drain the fluid through a chest tube.

Drugs called fibrinolytics can be given through the chest tube and may break down the divisions between these pockets. This can make it easier for doctors to drain the fluid. One such fibrinolytic is called urokinase.

The TIME3 trial aims to find out whether urokinase can reduce breathlessness. It will also test whether urokinase makes pleurodesis more successful.

Type of study

Randomised trial

Contact details


Who is funding the study?

This trial is being funded by the National Cancer Research Institute. Syner-Med (the manufacturers of Urokinase) have provided the trial drugs, but Syner-Med is not involved in the running of the study and will have no input to the analysis or implementation of the trial results.

When is it taking place?

The trial is recruiting now until the end of 2013.

Where is it taking place?

Multiple hospitals around the UK.

Who is included?

People with cancer who have fluid around their lungs, which has divided into many pockets (multi-septated). Researchers aim to recruit 126 patients to take part in this trial.