Publication details

Telemedicine-Guided Carotid and Transcranial Ultrasound. A Pilot Feasibility Study



Year of publication 2006
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Stroke : a journal of cerebral circulation
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Medicine

Field Neurology, neurosurgery, neurosciences
Keywords Doppler transcranial; stroke; telemedicine; ultrasonography
Description Background: Transcranial Doppler (TCD) and carotid duplex (CD) provide rapid and safe screening for stroke patients but are highly operator dependent. We explored the feasibility of telemedicine (TM) guided TCD/CD administered by a health care provider inexperienced with ultrasound. Methods: Dual video screens transmitted real time TCD/CD images and sound to a neurosonographer. TM TCD/CD characteristics were compared with an in person (IP) examination independently obtained on the same patient. We compared carotid stenosis, thrombolysis in brain ischemia (TIBI) flow grades, and the time spent on testing. Results: We examined 8 subjects with a median age of 51 (31 to 63 range). IP and TM successfully examined 100% of internal carotid and middle cerebral arteries, 50% versus 44% of anterior cerebral artery, and 100% versus 88% of the basilar arteries, respectively. The median time in minutes IP versus TM was 15 (range 10 to 35) and 30 (15 to 50) for CD (P=0.07) and 18 (15 to 30) and 45 (30 to 55) for TCD (P=0.002), respectively. TM correctly identified all normal CD/TCD examinations in 7 subjects. In 1 patient, TM identified carotid occlusion but misread TIBI flow grades in both middle cerebral arteries. Conclusions: Our pilot study showed the feasibility of TCD/CD by an inexperienced health professional guided by a sonographer via TM. Tests were completed within times comparable to outpatient setting in a vascular laboratory.

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