Using the Web to reduce postoperative pain following ambulatory surgery.

Date Published:

1999

Abstract:

To test the hypothesis that educational information provided via the web would not only be accessed by our patients, but could also reduce postoperative pain following ambulatory surgery, we enrolled 195 patients into a randomized controlled study. Fifty-two percent of our ambulatory surgery patients already knew how to use and had access to the Internet. Eighty-five percent of our study patients accessed the resources made available to them on the web site. Patients who had access to the pain management information on the ambulatory surgery web site reported significantly less postoperative pain on arrival to their home after surgery (p < 0.016) and into the night after surgery (p < 0.013). These patients also reported significantly less postoperative pain for the day immediately following surgery (p < 0.037). We conclude that using the Internet to provide just-in-time patient education can significantly effect the clinical outcome of care.