After stroke, most patients prefer video conferencing for communication with doctors

February 17, 2016

Nearly 6 in 10 stroke patients of all ages would prefer to follow up with their physicians after hospital discharge with a video call rather than a traditional phone call, according to new findings from Northwell Health neurologists.

The research, being presented at the International Stroke Conference in Los Angeles Feb. 17-19, 2016, also indicates that younger 55 and younger would unanimously embrace the use of telemedicine—a growing trend nationwide—for close post-stroke communication, which is shown to be crucial for medication compliance and patient satisfaction.

The study was co-authored by Paul Wright, M.D., chair of Neurology at North Shore University Hospital and Long Island Jewish Medical Center, and Jeffrey M. Katz, M.D., chief of Neurovascular Services and director of the Stroke Center at North Shore University Hospital, both members of Northwell Health. In addition to Dr. Wright and Dr. Katz, co-authors of the study included medical student Fred Cohen, Michele Gribko, MS, RN and Jackie McCarthy, MS.

"With technology as advanced as it is, we wanted to know if would be happier getting on a face-to-face call with a healthcare professional as opposed to a telephone call," Dr. Wright said. "This technology could help us get as much information as possible from our patients and provide a service to the community in a very timely, easily accessible manner."

"People like seeing their physicians face-to-face, and a telephone call is obviously less personal," agreed Dr. Katz. "It's also better to be able to see our patients because we learn a lot by looking at someone. We're not just getting information from their voice. As they say, a picture's worth a thousand words."

In the new study, 52 stroke patients of all ages were asked if a video or phone call would be their preferred post-hospitalization method of communicating with their attending physician. Thirty (nearly 58 percent) requested a video call, while 22 (42.3 percent) requested a phone call.

But among patients age 55 and younger, all 14 said they'd prefer a video call. In patients 65 and younger, 19 of 27 (more than 70 percent) would opt for a .

While age appeared to influence the preference for video calls, Dr. Wright noted that increasing numbers of seniors are becoming computer-savvy and their adult children are often willing to help install video conferencing software and apps—such as Skype or Facetime—on their parents' computers and smart phones.

Video calls might potentially reduce hospital readmissions after stroke, helping patients and physicians iron-out any confusion over medication use and visually track a patient's overall appearance, as well as, any errant physical symptoms.

"We could certainly see another phase of our study going forward in patients who express a preference for video calls to determine, on our end, if there's really a medical benefit," Dr. Katz said.

Dr. Wright said hospitals might want to consider installing video conferencing rooms for patients and physicians, which can also be utilized to communicate with outside physicians referring transfer patients.

"There's so much further we can go with this, and it's exciting," Dr. Wright added. "There's a surprising demand."

Explore further: Stroke patients unable to identify doctor are more apt to misunderstand medications, care plan

Related Stories

Stroke patients unable to identify doctor are more apt to misunderstand medications, care plan

February 17, 2016
Hospitalized stroke patients are far more likely than general neurology or neurosurgery patients to be unable to identify their attending physician, a knowledge gap that leads to greater odds of also misunderstanding their ...

Survey finds 73 percent unaware of stroke symptoms

January 11, 2016
Up to three hours after a person experiences the first symptom of a stroke is often referred to as the "golden window." That's the period of time doctors say is crucial for patients to get to a hospital to receive medical ...

A phone call from a pharmacist can reduce some hospital admissions

April 11, 2014
Having a pharmacist call patients at home to go over their medications can identify many medication-based problems. However, a new study in Health Services Research found that pharmacist-patient telephone consultations only ...

Clot removal may save money and limit disability

February 17, 2016
Adding mechanical clot removal to clot-busting drugs could lower stroke survivors medical bills, decrease government healthcare as well as non-healthcare related costs, and increase the likelihood of the patient returning ...

Endovascular treatment may preserve mental capacity after stroke

February 17, 2016
In addition to improving survival and reducing disability, mechanically removing the clot causing an ischemic stroke leads to better cognitive functioning, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's ...

Video game teaches kids about stroke symptoms and calling 9-1-1

January 30, 2014
Children improved their understanding of stroke symptoms and what to do if they witness a stroke after playing a 15-minute stroke education video game, according to new research reported in the American Heart Association ...

Recommended for you

Researchers investigate the potential of spider silk protein for engineering artificial heart

August 18, 2017
Ever more people are suffering from cardiac insufficiency, despite significant advances in preventing and minimising damage to the heart. The main cause of reduced cardiac functionality lies in the irreversible loss of cardiac ...

Lasers used to detect risk of heart attack and stroke

August 18, 2017
Patients at risk of heart attacks and strokes may be spotted earlier thanks to a diagnosis tool that uses near-infrared light to identify high-risk arterial plaques, according to research carried out at WMG, University of ...

Cholesterol crystals are sure sign a heart attack may loom

August 17, 2017
A new Michigan State University study on 240 emergency room patients shows just how much of a role a person's cholesterol plays, when in a crystallized state, during a heart attack.

How Gata4 helps mend a broken heart

August 15, 2017
During a heart attack, blood stops flowing into the heart; starved for oxygen, part of the heart muscle dies. The heart muscle does not regenerate; instead it replaces dead tissue with scars made of cells called fibroblasts ...

Injectable tissue patch could help repair damaged organs

August 14, 2017
A team of U of T Engineering researchers is mending broken hearts with an expanding tissue bandage a little smaller than a postage stamp.

'Fat but fit' are at increased risk of heart disease

August 14, 2017
Carrying extra weight could raise your risk of heart attack by more than a quarter, even if you are otherwise healthy.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.