Dr. Volker Schulze
Dr. Volker Schulze

How does telemedicine improve heart failure treatment?


Heart failure can be a serious condition. Read here what heart failure is and how telemedicine can help.

Telemedicine - monitoring of vital parameters

Patients with heart failure can use telehealth platforms to measure vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate, weight and oxygen saturation at home and transmit this data to their treating physicians. This allows physicians to quickly identify changes in values and make adjustments to treatment as needed before complications arise.


Heart failure - remote monitoring of implants

Patients with implants such as pacemakers or implantable defibrillators can have their devices monitored remotely via telemedicine platforms. This allows doctors to respond quickly if there are problems or if changes need to be made to the settings.


Improve patient retention through telemedicine

Telehealth platforms can help patients feel more connected to their care and their doctors. By regularly sharing data and interacting with healthcare professionals, patients can better understand how their treatment is affecting their health.


Improving self-management skills

Patients with heart failure can receive training and guidance on how to self-manage their condition via telehealth platforms. This can help them better control their symptoms and manage their treatment more effectively.


Advantages of telemedicine - reduction of hospitalization

By regularly monitoring vital signs and responding quickly to changes, complications can be avoided and hospital stays reduced. This is beneficial for both the patient and the healthcare system.


Telemedicine in heart failure - the scientific facts

Telemedicine has a significant impact on the management of heart failure, as several studies have shown in recent years. One of the most recent and comprehensive studies on this topic is the 2018 Telemedical Interventional Management in Heart Failure II (TIM-HF2) randomized controlled trial.

The study, published in The Lancet, examined the impact of a telemedicine intervention on survival and hospitalization in patients with chronic heart failure. The telemedicine intervention consisted of regular monitoring of vital signs and communication with healthcare professionals via a dedicated telemedicine platform.

The study included 1,571 patients from 11 European countries and found that the telemedicine intervention led to a significant reduction in hospitalizations and deaths. Patients in the telemedicine group had a 20% reduced likelihood of hospitalization for heart failure compared to the control group.

Another 2020 study, published in Circulation: Heart Failure, examined the impact of telemedicine on physical activity and quality of life in patients with chronic heart failure. The study involved 176 patients who received a six-month telemedicine intervention consisting of weekly transmission of vital signs, education on self-management of the condition, and feedback from healthcare professionals.

The study found that patients in the telemedicine group had significant improvement in physical activity and quality of life compared with the control group.

Overall, these studies show that telemedicine is an effective way to improve heart failure management. Regular monitoring of vital signs, training in self-management of the disease, and rapid response to changes can help prevent complications, reduce hospitalizations, and improve patients' quality of life. More information about the first telemedicine center in Düsseldorf can be found here!

  • Koehler F, Koehler K, Deckwart O, et al. Efficacy of telemedical interventional management in patients with heart failure (TIM-HF2): a randomised, controlled, parallel-group, unmasked trial. Lancet. 2018; 392(10152):1047-1057. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31880-4
  • Cajita MI, Hodgson NA, Budhathoki C, Han HR. Interventions to improve outcomes in heart failure patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Health Informatics J. 2017; 23(4):268-293. doi:10.1177/1460458215627040.
  • Johansson T, Wilderäng U, Strömberg A. Telemonitoring in patients with heart failure - A systematic review. Heart Lung
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