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International Journal of Telemedicine and Applications
Volume 2008, Article ID 132890, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2008/132890
Research Article

Treatment of Diabetic Foot Ulcers in the Home: Video Consultations as an Alternative to Outpatient Hospital Care

University of Aarhus, Nordre Ringgade 1, Aarhus C 8000, Denmark

Received 27 April 2007; Revised 31 August 2007; Accepted 30 December 2007

Academic Editor: Max E. Stachura

Copyright © 2008 Jane Clemensen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate whether video consultations in the home can support a viable alternative to visits to the hospital outpatient clinic for patients with diabetic foot ulcers. And furthermore whether patients, relatives, visiting nurses, and experts at the hospital will experience satisfaction and increased confidence with this new course of treatment. Participatory design methods were applied as well as field observations, semistructured interviews, focus groups, and qualitative analysis of transcriptions of telemedical consultations conducted during a pilot test. This study shows that it is possible for experts at the hospital to conduct clinical examinations and decision making at a distance, in close cooperation with the visiting nurse and the patient. The visiting nurse experienced increased confidence with the treatment of the foot ulcer and characterized the consultations as a learning situation. All patients expressed satisfaction and felt confidence with this new way of working.