Friday, April 29, 2011
Telemedicine can deliver cardiac rehabilitation
Conducting cardiac rehabilitation via telemedicine may be an effective alternative to conventional onsite programs in terms of risk reduction a small pilot study shows. The results for both the onsite and remote group of patients mirrored results reported in previous cardiac rehabilitation research. Led by Lance Dalleck, formerly with the Department of Human Performance, Minnesota State University-Mankato, the researchers believe this study is among the first to use telemedicine to deliver cardiac rehabilitation at a remote site. Earlier studies of telemedicine in cardiac rehabilitation have shown it to be useful for teaching, monitoring and providing support to cardiac patients at a distance. "There were no significant differences in the changes from baseline to post program values between conventional cardiac rehabilitation and telemedicine-delivered cardiac rehabilitation for any of the measured variables," wrote Dalleck, who is now at the Department of Sport and Exercise Science, University of Auckland, New Zealand. "These findings suggest that telemedicine can be used to deliver cardiac rehabilitation effectively to patients who otherwise would not have access to such programs."