Successful post-operative telerehabilitation following total knee replacement (TKR) has been documented using synchronous (real-time) video. Bandwidth and the need for expensive hardware are cited as barriers to implementation. Web-based asynchronous visual platforms promise to address these problems but have not been evaluated.We performed a randomized control study comparing an asynchronous video-based software platform to in-person outpatient physical therapy visits following TKR. Fifty-one patients were randomized to either the intervention group, using an asynchronous video application on a mobile device, or the traditional group undergoing outpatient physical therapy. Outcome data were collected using validated instruments prior to surgery and at a minimum three-month follow-up. Twenty-nine patients completed the study. There were no statistically significant differences in any clinical outcome between groups. The satisfaction with care was equivalent between groups. Overall utilization of hospital-based resources was 60% less than for the traditional group.
This study reports that clinical outcomes following asynchronous telerehabilitation administered over the web and through a hand-held device were not inferior to those achieved with traditional care. Outpatient resource utilization was lower. Patient satisfaction was high for both groups. The results suggest that asynchronous telerehabilitation may be a more practical alternative to real-time video visits and are clinically equivalent to the in-person care model.