Mobile Tech to Help Stroke Patients

Post-Stroke Communication Deficits (PSCD) can be a common symptom when patients sustain a stroke. These deficits include difficulty to produce or understand language, motor speech disorders, and cognitive-communication disorders. Approximately 40 percent of stroke survivors will have communication disorders post stroke.

The Clinical Trial “TeleRehab for Stoke Patients Using Mobile Technology”, http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02615132 is a randomized controlled study being sponsored by the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.

The trial is going to test the value of providing a mobile platform-based Speech Language Therapy (SLT) program to help patients discharged from an acute care hospital with stroke and PSCD. The patients taking part in the trial will have outpatient rehab services versus standard of care treatment.

The investigators will offer iPad-based SLT standard treatment to a sample of 20 patients 18 years or older with post stroke communication deficits. The primary outcome will be to determine the adherence rate as to the total number of patients who completed the full course and the retention rate as to whether discharged PSCD patients will actually complete the therapy.

The SLT program will instruct the patient to use the iPad apps as intervention for at least one hour per day until they are admitted to outpatient SLT services or for a maximum of eight weeks. Throughout the telemedicine treatment phase, the patients’ progress will be monitored remotely through Apps/Skype/Facetime/Telephone consultations on a weekly basis

Information on the clinical trial (NCT02615132) was received in November 2015. To be included, patients need to have been diagnosed with stroke and are currently being discharged from the neurology unit and/or the neurology acute care unit in the Civic Campus of The Ottawa Hospital.

Patients must also have mild to moderate communication deficits and are being discharged to their home residence, would benefit from SLT therapy, and have access to Wi-Fi connection at their residence.

The date for the clinical trial to start is December 2015 with completion date expected June 2017. For more details, email Rany Shamloul, PhD at rshamloul@0hri.ca.

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