Using e-Health in the physical therapeutic care process for patients with temporomandibular disorders: a qualitative study on the perspective of physical therapists and patients
SourceDisability and Rehabilitation, 44, 4, (2022), pp. 617-624
Article / Letter to editor
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Disability and Rehabilitation
SubjectRadboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
BACKGROUND: Treatment of temporomandibular disorder (TMD) currently consists of a combination of noninvasive therapies and may be supported by e-Health. It is, however, unclear if physical therapists and patients are positive towards the use of e-Health. PURPOSE: To assess the needs, facilitators and barriers of the use of an e-Health application from the perspective of both orofacial physical therapists and patients with TMD. METHODS: A descriptive qualitative study was performed. Eleven physical therapists and nine patients with TMD were interviewed using a topic guide. Thematic analysis was applied, and findings were ordered according to four themes: acceptance of e-Health, expected utility, usability and convenience. RESULTS: Physical therapists identified the need for e-Health as a supporting application to send questionnaires, animated exercises and evaluation tools. Key facilitators for both physical therapists and patients for implementing e-Health included the increase in self-efficacy, support of data collection and personalization of the application. Key barriers are the increase of screen time, the loss of personal contact, not up-to-date information and poor design of the application. CONCLUSIONS: Physical therapists and patients with TMD are positive towards the use of e-Health, in a blended form with the usual rehabilitation care process for TMD complaints.Implications for rehabilitationThe rehabilitation process of temporomandibular complaints may be supported by the use of e-Health applications.Physical therapists and patients with temporomandibular disorders are positive towards the use of e-Health as an addition to the usual care.Especially during the treatment process, there is a need for clear animated videos and reminders for the patients.
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