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World Neurosurg ; 2021 Nov 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574951


BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic necessitated the use of telemedicine for most medical specialties, including neurosurgery, although before the pandemic, neurosurgeons infrequently used telemedicine for outpatient visits. We conducted a patient-centric evaluation of telemedicine in our endovascular neurosurgery practice, covering a 4-month period early in the pandemic. METHODS: Survey e-mails after telemedicine visits were sent to all patients who underwent an outpatient telemedicine visit between March 11, 2020, and June 22, 2020, at an endovascular neurosurgery clinic affiliated with a tertiary care center. RESULTS: Of 140 patients, 65 (46%) completed the e-mail survey. Of the 65 respondents, 35 (54%) agreed or strongly agreed with the statement that even before their telemedicine experience, they thought telemedicine would be a convenient way to receive a neurological consultation. After their telemedicine visit, 47 (72%) agreed or strongly agreed with this statement, and 28 (43%) agreed or strongly agreed that they would prefer telemedicine for future visits. Of the 65 respondents, 61 (94%) rated their telemedicine visit as average or better: 34 (52%) rated it excellent, 12 (18%) rated it above average, and 15 (23%) rated it average. When patients compared their telemedicine visit with a prior in-person clinic visit, only 10 of 44 patients (23%) thought the telemedicine visit was more complicated than an in-person visit, and 21 of 44 (48%) said they would prefer telemedicine for future visits. CONCLUSIONS: Our patients expressed satisfaction with their telemedicine visits, and telemedicine will likely play an important role in future outpatient endovascular neurosurgery consultations.