Feasibility of Follow-Up through E-Mail in Patients Discharged after Subarachnoid Hemorrhage

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Abstract

Background

Long-term follow-up in patients with a subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) can be important in patients care and for clinical research, but outpatients' visits or telephone interviews are time consuming.

Methods

We studied the feasibility of follow up through e-mail in a prospectively collected series of patients with aneurysmal SAH.

Results

Of the 97 patients who were discharged 58 (60%; 95% CI 49–70%) had e-mail, and all 58 provided their e-mail address. At 1 year 37 patients (64%; 95% CI 50–76%) responded to the first questionnaire sent by e-mail, 6 did so after an e-mail reminder. Fifteen responded after a telephone call, of which 12 had a new e-mail address.

Conclusions

E-mail follow-up after SAH is feasible and for patients acceptable, but the proportion of patients with no or with changing e-mail address is considerable. The validity of the responses via e-mail has to be assessed in further studies.

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