Telemedicine in the Management of Chronic Obstructive Respiratory Diseases: An Overview

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Mario Morais-Almeida, MD
Miguel Barbosa, MD
Claudia Sousa, MD


Non-transmissible chronic respiratory diseases (CRDs) are very prevalent. In this chapter, we focus on the different dimensions through which telemedicine can be delivered and used in the management of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma, the major obstructive CRDs. Telerehabilitation, health education, telemonitoring, early detection of exacerbations, psychosocial support, and smoking cessation through telemedicine programs allow the delivery of quality healthcare to COPD patients who have limited access to health services. In asthma patients, telemedicine is effective in improving inhalation technique, increasing adherence to medication/self-management, and health education. We discuss the importance of virtual visits and mobile/web-based tools in the management and monitoring of patients with CRDs, the rising promise of telespirometry performed outside the hospitals, and the most relevant limitations to expand the implementation of telemedicine, such as the lack of digital literacy in patients and the issues of privacy and security when sharing data online.


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Chapter 10