Telemedicine Can Replace the Neurologist on a Mobile Stroke Unit

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Background and Purpose—

The BEST-MSU study (Benefits of Stroke Treatment Delivered Using a Mobile Stroke Unit) is a comparative effectiveness trial in patients randomized to mobile stroke unit or standard management. A substudy tested interrater agreement for tissue-type plasminogen activator eligibility between a telemedicine vascular neurologist and onboard vascular neurologist.

Methods—

On scene, both the telemedicine vascular neurologist and onboard vascular neurologist independently evaluated the patient, documenting their tissue-type plasminogen activator treatment decision, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score, and computed tomographic interpretation. Agreement was determined using Cohen κ statistic. Telemedicine-related technical failures that impeded remote assessment were recorded.

Results—

Simultaneous and independent telemedicine vascular neurologist and onboard vascular neurologist assessment was attempted in 174 patients. In 4 patients (2%), the telemedicine vascular neurologist could not make a decision because of technical problems. The telemedicine vascular neurologist agreed with the onboard vascular neurologist on 88% of evaluations (κ=0.73).

Conclusions—

Remote telemedicine vascular neurologist assessment is reliable and accurate, supporting either telemedicine vascular neurologist or onboard vascular neurologist assessment on our mobile stroke unit.

Clinical Trial Registration—

URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT02190500.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles