Telemonitoring to Manage Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: Systematic Literature Review
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Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of death throughout the world. Telemedicine has been utilized for many diseases and its prevalence is increasing in the United States. Telemonitoring of patients with COPD has the potential to help patients manage disease and predict exacerbations.
Objective: The objective of this review is to evaluate the effectiveness of telemonitoring to manage COPD. Researchers want to determine how telemonitoring has been used to observe COPD and we are hoping this will lead to more research in telemonitoring of this disease.
Methods: This review was conducted in accordance with the Assessment for Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) and reported in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA). Authors performed a systematic review of the PubMed and Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) databases to obtain relevant articles. Articles were then accepted or rejected by group consensus. Each article was read and authors identified barriers and facilitators to effectiveness of telemonitoring of COPD.
Results: Results indicate that conflicting information exists for the effectiveness of telemonitoring of patients with COPD. Primarily, 13 out of 29 (45%) articles stated that patient outcomes were improved overall with telemonitoring, while 11 of 29 (38%) indicated no improvement. Authors identified the following facilitators: reduced need for in-person visits, better disease management, and bolstered patient-provider relationship. Important barriers included low-quality data, increased workload for providers, and cost.
Conclusions: The high variability between the articles and the ways they provided telemonitoring services created conflicting results from the literature review. Future research should emphasize standardization of telemonitoring services and predictability of exacerbations.