K25 — June 2010 — Telemedicine Advances
Intro: Many Americans dream of a life in the country. A slower pace, fresh air, room to roam. But living in a rural area may come with a trade-off. Healthcare. Rural hospitals just don't have as many resources as urban hospitals do. And that can be a problem when you have a health event such as a stroke. Doctors at Mayo Clinic are using telemedicine — smart phones and the internet — to bring medical expertise to doctors and patients in the country and around the globe.
"THIS IS THE CAT SCAN OF THE PATIENT IN QUESTION."
ON HIS SMART PHONE, MAYO CLINIC DR. BART DEMAERSCHALK ASSESSES THE BRAIN OF A STROKE VICTIM.
"WE'RE ABLE TO SEE ALL THE CRITICAL DETAILS. EARLY ESCHEMIC CHANGE IS QUITE EVIDENT, IF THERE'S A CLOT IN A BLOCKED ARTERY WE CAN SEE IT. IF THERE'S A HEMORRHAGE IT'S VERY EVIDENT ON THE SCREEN."
THESE IMAGES GIVE DR. DEMAERSCHALK ENOUGH INFORMATION TO MAKE A DIAGNOSIS EVEN THOUGH THE PATIENT IS ACTUALLY MILES AWAY. PLUS HE CAN HELP E.R. DOCTORS IN REMOTE AREAS DETERMINE THE DIAGNOSIS AND ADMINISTER LIFE-SAVING TREATMENT.
"WE SEE THIS AS ONE OF THE MANY TOOLS IN THE TOOL BELT OF A TELESTROKE NEUROLOGIST." ANOTHER TOOL IS THE E-CONSULTATION.
"NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE YOU CAN GET A SECOND OPINION FROM SOMEONE."
DWIGHT CHANNER IS ON THE TEAM STUDYING VARIOUS ASPECTS OF TELEMEDICINE. THE E-CONSULTATION ALLOWS DOCTORS ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD WHO HAVE ACCESS TO THE INTERNET, TO GET A SECOND OPINION FROM MAYO DOCTORS WITHIN 72 HOURS.
"THIS IS THE WEB INTERFACE FOR GLOBAL STROKE."
GLOBAL STROKE IS ANOTHER COMPUTER BASED TOOL. IT BRINGS DOCTORS TOGETHER TO SHARE INFORMATION.
"IT'S AN OPPORTUNITY FOR STROKE SPECIALISTS ALL OVER THE WORLD TO SHARE KNOWLEDGE AND CASES."
THEY CAN THEN BRING THAT KNOWLEDGE BACK TO THEIR PATIENTS. DR. DEMAERSCHALK SAYS TELEMEDICINE WORKS.
"IT IS PREVENTING STROKE-RELATED DISABILITY AND DEATH. WE ARE HAVING THAT IMPACT."
USING SMARTPHONES AND THE INTERNET TO GET STATE OF THE ART STROKE TREATMENT TO PEOPLE WHO NEED IT.
FOR MEDICAL EDGE, I'M VIVIEN WILLIAMS.
Anchor tag: Dr. Demaerschalk is also studying another tool, the stroke robot. It allows doctors and stroke patients to interact with each other through audio and visual means even though they may be miles apart.
Right now he and his team are conducting pilot studies of these telemedicine technologies to learn more about how they can help stroke doctors and patients. For more information, visit our website at…
STATIONS: Per the licensing agreement, please provide a link from your station's website to http://www.MayoClinic.org or voice tag "MayoClinic.org" for more information.