Use of a patient education website to supplement informed consent improved patients’ knowledge about their planned operations and increased satisfaction with the consent process, but did not increase anxiety levels, according to study results.
Researchers conducted a randomized, controlled trial comparing the quality of informed consent provided by a standard discussion with the treating surgeon vs. augmentation of this discussion with an online education resource among patients undergoing five common orthopedic procedures. The study’s primary outcome measure was patients’ knowledge about their operation, whereas secondary outcome measures were patients’ satisfaction with the informed consent process and anxiety relating to their operations.
Results showed a statistically significant increase in patient knowledge in the intervention group vs. the control group. The researchers also found patients in the intervention group had an average survey score of 69.25% correct answers vs. 47.38% in the control group.
The intervention group also had improved satisfaction, but when it came to anxiety scores, no statistically significant differences were observed between the two groups, according to the researchers. – by Casey Tingle
Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.