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Epilepsy Behav ; 111: 107211, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-601437


Teleneurology in Spain had not been implemented so far in clinical practice, except in urgent patients with stroke. Telemedicine was hardly used in epilepsy, and patients and neurologists usually preferred onsite visits. Our goal was to study impressions of adult and pediatric epileptologists about the use of telemedicine after emergent implementation during the new coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. METHODS: An online survey was sent to the members of the Spanish Epilepsy Society and the members of the Epilepsy Study Group of the Catalan Neurological Society, inquiring about different aspects of telemedicine in epilepsy during the pandemic lockdown. RESULTS: A total of 66 neurologists responded, mostly adult neurologists (80.3%), the majority with a monographic epilepsy clinic (4 out of 5). Of all respondents, 59.1% reported to attend more than 20 patients with epilepsy (PWE) a week. During the pandemic, respondents handled their epilepsy clinics mainly with telephone calls (88%); only 4.5% used videoconference. Changes in antiseizure medications were performed less frequently than during onsite visits by 66.6% of the epileptologists. Scales were not administered during these visits, and certain types of information such as sudden expected unrelated death in epilepsy (SUDEP) were felt to be more appropriate to discuss in person. More than 4 out of 5 of the neurologists (84.8%) stated that they would be open to perform some telematic visits in the future. CONCLUSIONS: In Spain, emergent implantation of teleneurology has shown to be appropriate for the care of many PWE. Technical improvements, extended use of videoconference and patient selection may improve results and patient and physician satisfaction.

Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections , Epilepsy/therapy , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Telemedicine , Adult , COVID-19 , Death, Sudden , Emergency Service, Hospital , Humans , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Spain , Surveys and Questionnaires