CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Asian J Neurosurg 2024; 19(02): 263-269
DOI: 10.1055/s-0044-1787082
Research Article

Telemedicine in Follow-up after Spine Surgery: Need of the Hour

Pankaj Totala
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
Raghavendra K. Sharma
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
Mohit Agrawal
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
Mayank Garg
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
Jaskaran S. Gosal
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
Suryanarayanan Bhaskar
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
,
1   Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
› Author Affiliations

Abstract

Purpose There is an acute shortage of neurosurgeons and spine surgeons especially in rural areas of low- and middle-income countries including India. Patients of spine surgery need to travel long distances for follow-up at tertiary care hospitals. This study was done to evaluate role and success rate of telemedicine in follow-up after spine surgery based on patients' diagnosis and demographic features and to identify barriers to successful telemedicine consultations.

Materials and Methods All patients undergoing spine surgeries including craniovertebral junction (CVJ) surgeries from January 2021 to June 2022 were included in the study. Success rate of telemedicine was calculated using a simple formula: Success rate of telemedicine = successful telemedicine consultations / total number of telemedicine consultation × 100. Success rate was evaluated with respect to demographic features and underlying disease-related factors.

Results Eighty-four patients formed the study group in which a total of 181 video teleconsultations were done. Overall success rate of telemedicine was 82.87%. Higher socioeconomic and educational statuses were related to higher success rates of tele-consultations (p < 0.05). Difficulty in assessing neurological condition using video call in follow-up cases of CVJ and issues related to Internet communication network leading to inability to video call and share image/videos were major causes of failures.

Conclusion Telemedicine may prove an effective option for following up patients undergoing spine surgeries except CVJ, which is likely to improve further with improvements in Internet connectivity.

Note

This study was presented at 10th AIIMS Annual Spine workshop (AASW), 2022, at New Delhi, India on September 9, 2022.




Publication History

Article published online:
06 June 2024

© 2024. Asian Congress of Neurological Surgeons. This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonDerivative-NonCommercial License, permitting copying and reproduction so long as the original work is given appropriate credit. Contents may not be used for commercial purposes, or adapted, remixed, transformed or built upon. (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/)

Thieme Medical and Scientific Publishers Pvt. Ltd.
A-12, 2nd Floor, Sector 2, Noida-201301 UP, India