Telemedicine is having a moment. Although the notion of medical treatment from afar has been around since at least the dawn of the telephone, the recent rise of high-quality webcam and phone connections has accelerated the conversation.
Skype, the leader in consumer-grade video conferencing, is leading the pack. As more patients take advantage of video hookups to seek care, more clinicians are getting comfortable with the notion of providing some basic diagnosis and self-care instruction through an online connection.
But does it help?
A recent study pitted Skype support against print materials only, in a cohort of Australian adults with chronic knee pain. The results were clear:
Participants in the group with the video conference calls reported significantly more pain relief and physical function than those in the other group at three months. At nine months, these improvements had been sustained.
The jury is still out on whether Skype support helped because it encouraged better workout and therapy habits, or because the personal touch involved was simply more enriching for patients than working alone. Either way, it’s a clear win for the tele- set.
If you want the best help for knee pain in person, contact the expert knee doctors at AOSM today.