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Impact of Heart Disease History on Safety of Telemedicine Cardiac Clearance Appointments

HumanInsight Impact of Heart Disease History on Safety of Telemedicine Cardiac Clearance Appointments

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2022 Dec 1;30(23):1131-1139. doi: 10.5435/JAAOS-D-22-00456. Epub 2022 Sep 1.


PURPOSE: The objective of this study was to compare complication, readmission, mortality, and cancellation rates between patients who had either an in-person or telemedicine preoperative cardiac clearance visit before spine surgery.

METHODS: A retrospective review was conducted on patients who underwent a spine procedure at a single tertiary academic center from February 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021. Cancellations, inpatient complications, 90-day readmissions, and inpatient and 90-day mortality rates were compared between in-person and telemedicine cardiac clearance visits. Secondary analysis included multiple logistic regression to determine independent predictors of case cancellations and complications. Alpha was set at P < 0.05.

RESULTS: A total of 1,331 consecutive patients were included, with 775 patients (58.2%) having an in-person cardiac clearance visit and 556 (41.8%) having telemedicine clearance. Overall, the telemedicine cohort did not have more cancellations, complications, or readmissions. Regardless of the type of clearance, patients with a history of cardiac disease had more inpatient complications (15.8% versus 6.9%, P < 0.001) and higher 90-day mortality rates (2.3% versus 0.4%, P = 0.005). Subgroup analysis of patients with a history of cardiac disease showed that patients who had telemedicine visits had more cancellations (4.6% versus 10.9%, P = 0.036) and higher 90-day mortality rates (1.4% versus 4.4%, P = 0.045). On regression analysis, telemedicine visits were not independent predictors of preoperative cancellation rates (P = 0.173) but did predict greater preoperative cancellations among patients with cardiac history (odds ratio 2.73, P = 0.036).

DISCUSSION: Patients with cardiac disease who undergo preoperative telemedicine visits have greater preoperative surgical cancellation rates and postoperative 90-day mortality rates. Although preoperative telemedicine visits may be appropriate for most patients, a history of cardiac disease should be a contraindication.

PMID:36400060 | DOI:10.5435/JAAOS-D-22-00456

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