According to WikiPedia, “Telerehabilitation … is the delivery of rehabilitation services over telecommunication networks and the internet”. Meaning, that you can get a clinical assessment or some form of therapy for your low back pain from the comfort of your home, right in front of your personal computer! That bodes well for those individuals who have mobility issues or for those who cannot travel to a clinic. This article from the site Medical News Today discusses a study to determine whether telerehabilitation can be used as a way to provide accurate assessments for individuals with low back pain.
A new ‘telerehabilitation’ approach lets physical therapists assess patients with low back pain (LBP) over the Internet, with good accuracy compared with face-to-face examinations, reports a study in the journal Spine. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.
Taking advantage of Skype and other widely-used services may make telerehabilitation a more feasible alternative to in-person clinic visits, according to the new research by Prof. Manuel Arroyo-Morales and colleagues of University of Granada, Spain. They believe their results give preliminary support to the implementation of web-based LBP assessment systems using video recordings that can be evaluated by different therapists.”
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The study concluded that a telerehabilitation system provided similar results as a “face-to-face” clinical assessment, and stated that such a system utilizing a PC with free software like Skype could be useful in assessing individuals with low back pain. However, the study did warn that issues with the utilization of telerehabilitation do exist, such as data security (i.e., of patient records) and those individuals who are not familiar with the use of PCs. Nevertheless, telerehabilitation could provide another way for individuals to receive a clinical assessment for their low back pain.