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J Telemed Telecare. 2009;15(2):95-7. doi: 10.1258/jtt.2008.080813.

Feasibility of using videoconferencing to provide diabetes education: a pilot study.

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  • 1Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth, University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Boulevard, Kansas City, KS 66160, USA. btimmerberg@kumc.edu

Abstract

We conducted a pilot study of the effectiveness of individual counselling sessions provided by a dietician through telemedicine for patients with diabetes. All participants received a single group education session via videoconference. Those who were randomized to the intervention also received two additional follow-up sessions, four and eight weeks later. Glycosylated haemoglobin and total cholesterol were measured at the start and again 16 weeks later. The patients completed diabetes quality-of-life and telemedicine patient satisfaction surveys. Thirty-two participants consented to participate. Complete data were collected on 13 intervention and 13 control patients. There was a 1% fall in HbA(1c) in the intervention group from pre- to post-assessment, although this was not significant. The control group showed a significantly larger fall in HbA(1c) levels than the intervention group (P = 0.043). Total cholesterol decreased in both groups, although not significantly. All control and intervention group participants indicated that they would participate in videoconferencing nutritional counselling again. The results suggest that providing nutritional therapy via videoconferencing may be useful in assisting patients to manage their conditions.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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