Oculoplastic patients need to be vetted for suitability prior to using telemedicine

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Patients with ectropion, entropion, and dermatochalasis are better suited for video consultation, regardless of age, compared to patients with “watery eye,” lid lesions, and conjunctival lesions, according to a new study.

In this study, 37.8% of new referrals and 60.9% of returning patients were vetted as suitable candidates for video consultation. Approximately 83% of those invited to the video consultation patriated, with 71.7% of new patients and 75% of returning patients completing the consultation. Approximately 15% of new patients and 15.8% of returning patients attempted a video consultation but failed and 13.4% and 9.2%, respectively, did not attend. More than half (50.3%) of all calls had problems, such as issues with patients connecting to the consultation, video quality, and audio quality, but 82.6% were completed.

In 81.3% of new cases and 91.1% of return cases, video consultation was successful in preventing in-person consultations.

For new patients, ectropion, entropion, and dermatochalasis were found to be well suited for video consultation, whereas patients with “watery eyes” were not. For returning patients, postoperative follow-up was well suited, whereas conjunctival lesions were not.

Jamison A, Diaper C, Drummond S, et al. Telemedicine in oculoplastics: The real-life application of video consultation clinics. Ophthalmic Plast Reconstr Surg. 2020; DOI: 10.1097/IOP.0000000000001852. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33237666.

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