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Dig Dis Sci. 2009 Nov;54(11):2463-72. doi: 10.1007/s10620-008-0640-0. Epub 2008 Dec 23.

Home telemanagement for patients with ulcerative colitis (UC HAT).

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Veterans Affairs, Maryland Heath Care System, Baltimore, MD 21201, USA.


Effective therapies exist to treat ulcerative colitis (UC); nonadherence, inadequate monitoring, and side-effects result in suboptimal outcomes. Novel methods for monitoring are needed. Our objectives were to assess acceptance of home automated telemanagement in ulcerative colitis (UC HAT). The UC HAT system consists of a laptop connected to a scale, a decision support server, and a web-based clinician portal. The UC HAT system facilitates self-care in UC patients by monitoring patient symptoms, side-effects, and adherence, and helping patients in following their individualized treatment plans. Ten adult patients with UC were trained to use UC HAT. Attitudinal surveys and qualitative interviews were performed. The results showed that all patients reported that use of the computer was not complicated. 90% reported that the symptom diary and side-effect questions were not difficult. All patients reported that the training was adequate and 70% reported that testing took little time. Seventy percent would feel safer using the system, and 90% would agree to use UC HAT in the future. Patients felt UC HAT would keep the patient and provider up to date on changes in symptoms. Self-testing appeared to make patients accountable for managing the disease. It was discussed that improved monitoring is needed for UC. Patients with UC can be easily trained to use HAT, and patient acceptance of the UC HAT system is high. Home automated telemanagement has potential to improve clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction in UC.

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