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JMIR Mhealth Uhealth. 2015 Feb 12;3(1):e18. doi: 10.2196/mhealth.3929.

Using a mobile app for monitoring post-operative quality of recovery of patients at home: a feasibility study.

Author information

1
Women\'s College Hospital, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada. john.semple@wchospital.ca.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Mobile apps are being viewed as a new solution for post-operative monitoring of surgical patients. Mobile phone monitoring of patients in the post-operative period can allow expedited discharge and may allow early detection of complications.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of the current study was to assess the feasibility of using a mobile app for the monitoring of post-operative quality of recovery at home following surgery in an ambulatory setting.

METHODS:

We enrolled 65 consecutive patients (n=33, breast reconstruction surgery; n=32, orthopedic surgery) and asked them to use a mobile phone daily to complete a validated quality of recovery scale (QoR-9) and take photographs of the surgical site for the first 30 days post-op. Surgeons were asked to review patient-entered data on each patient in their roster daily. A semistructured questionnaire was administered to patients and surgeons to assess satisfaction and feasibility of the mobile device.

RESULTS:

All 65 patients completed the study. The mean number of logins was 23.9 (range 7-30) for the breast patients and 19.3 (range 5-30) for the orthopedic patients. The mean number of logins was higher in the first 14 days compared to the 15-30 days post-op for both breast patients (13.4 vs 10.5; P<.001) and for the orthopedic patients (13.4 vs 6.0; P<.001). The mean score for overall satisfaction with using the mobile device was 3.9 for breast patients and 3.7 for orthopedic patients (scored from 1 (poor) to 4 (excellent)). Surgeons reported on the easy-to-navigate design, the portability to monitor patients outside of hospital, and the ability of the technology to improve time efficiency.

CONCLUSIONS:

The use of mobile apps for monitoring the quality of recovery in post-operative patients at home was feasible and acceptable to patients and surgeons in the current study. Future large scale studies in varying patient populations are required.

KEYWORDS:

care; mobile; outpatient; post-operative; recovery; smartphone; technology

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