In this 2-minute podcast, Lindsay Strowd, MD, shares the pros and cons she has experienced when using telemedicine to treat patients with atopic dermatitis.
Dr Strowd is an associate professor of dermatology at Wake Forest Medical School in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Melissa: Welcome back. Dr Strowd is with us again to discuss her experiences and some of the pros and cons of using telemedicine during the pandemic for patients with atopic dermatitis. Dr Strowd is an associate professor of dermatology at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Thank you for joining us today.
How has telemedicine affected the treatment of AD during the COVID‑19 pandemic?
Dr Lindsay Strowd: Obviously this past year, medicine has kind of looked very different, especially for the field of dermatology. Definitely back in the spring of 2020 when the Coronavirus was first spreading across the United States, a lot of us switched pretty quickly and pivoted to using the majority of our care as telemedicine, or tele‑dermatology.
I think there’s pros and cons to that. I do think that some of the pros of using telemedicine for treating atopic dermatitis patients is the accessibility. Parents of children, it’s sometimes much easier for them to connect virtually through a video visit, or even a phone visit than to actually get out of work and bring their kids to the office to see you in person.
Accessibility I think is great and was a positive of using telemedicine. I think also being able to see where patients live, so you get to see them in their home environment. It can be easier sometimes to connect with, especially our younger patients when they’re at home and they feel more comfortable in their own environment.
You could ask to examine them with the help of their parent and that oftentimes can be a less traumatic experience for children, depending on their age. Though I think that was kind of an unexpected positive outcome of using telemedicine.
Some of the downsides of managing patients virtually is that we miss the hands‑on contact with the patient, which for us in dermatology is extremely important. Also, you really realize that a lot of patients may not have reliable access to Internet or have the technology in place in their homes where they can reliably use video visits or other telemedicine technology.
I think it’s really raised awareness of the lack of access to technology that some of our patients have. That has been a challenge with using telemedicine.
Melissa: Thank you again for listening, if you have any questions for Dr Strowd or comments, please submit them in the feedback box below, we really enjoy your feedback. Thank you.