Research  |   November 2003
Telehealth
Author Notes
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: Pauline.Mashima@haw.tamc.amedd.army.mil
  • Currently affiliated with the John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii, HonoluluCurrently affiliated with Barrow Neurological Institute, St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ
    Currently affiliated with the John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii, HonoluluCurrently affiliated with Barrow Neurological Institute, St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ×
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Voice Disorders / Telepractice & Computer-Based Approaches
Research   |   November 2003
Telehealth
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology November 2003, Vol.12, 432-439. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2003/089)
History: Accepted 25 Apr 2003 , Received 05 Aug 2002
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology November 2003, Vol.12, 432-439. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2003/089)
History: Accepted 25 Apr 2003 , Received 05 Aug 2002

Telehealth offers the potential to meet the needs of underserved populations in remote regions. The purpose of this study was a proof-of-concept to determine whether voice therapy can be delivered effectively remotely. Treatment outcomes were evaluated for a vocal rehabilitation protocol delivered under 2 conditions: with the patient and clinician interacting within the same room (conventional group) and with the patient and clinician in separate rooms, interacting in real time via a hard-wired video camera and monitor (video teleconference group). Seventy-two patients with voice disorders served as participants. Based on evaluation by otolaryngologists, 31 participants were diagnosed with vocal nodules, 29 were diagnosed with edema, 9 were diagnosed with unilateral vocal fold paralysis, and 3 presented with vocal hyperfunction with no laryngeal pathology. Fifty-one participants (71%) completed the vocal rehabilitation protocol. Outcome measures included perceptual judgments of voice quality, acoustic analyses of voice, patient satisfaction ratings, and fiber-optic laryngoscopy. There were no differences in outcome measures between the conventional group and the remote video teleconference group. Participants in both groups showed positive changes on all outcome measures after completing the vocal rehabilitation protocol. Reasons for participants discontinuing therapy prematurely provided support for the telehealth model of service delivery.

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