Remote Monitoring Offers Little Benefit to IBD Patients, Study Finds

Remote Monitoring Offers Little Benefit to IBD Patients, Study Finds
Telemedicine monitoring failed to increase inflammatory bowel disease patients' confidence or motivation to manage their status, compared to standard routine care, a study reported. The study, "Effect of TELEmedicine for Inflammatory Bowel Disease on Patient Activation and Self-Efficacy," was published in Digestive Diseases and Sciences. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) comprises a group of autoimmune disorders, including Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), that cause inflammation of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. IBD incidence has been steadily increasing over the past few years and is now estimated to affect around 1.6 million adults in the U.S. "While treatment exists for IBD, a number of factors reduce the efficacy of IBD care. These include but are not limited to heterogeneity of phenotypes [symptoms shown] resulting in wide variation in care, low patient adherence to medications, costs of and access to treatment, low patient knowledge of IBD, and inadequate monitoring of side effects," the researchers said. For this reason, implementing strategies designed to improve IBD patients' self-care are extremely important. Telemedicine could be one such approach. "Telemedicine enables providers to monitor, treat, educate, and support IBD patients managing their symptoms, possibly increasing patients’ involvement in their own care and confidence in their ability to perform self-care," the investigators said. In this study, a team of researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore carried out a clinical trial to assess how telemedicine improves IBD patients' self-efficacy or activation compared to conventional care. The one-year, multicenter, randomized, controlled, Phase 3 TELEmedicine for Patients with
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