The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown measures have forced clinicians across the world to look on telemedicine. Although migraine as such seems an ideal option for telemedicine, a systematic study reviewing feasibility, efficacy, and advantages of current advanced telecommunication technologies in children with migraine is lacking.
Clinical details of telephonic consultations performed between March 25 and June 4, 2020, including migraine characteristics, analgesic/prophylactic drug regimens, headache frequency/severity/disability, compliance, drug-related/unrelated adverse effects and unavailability of drugs were recorded. Suitable change in the dose/commercial brand of drug regimen and the addition of new drugs were done as required. Voice call, text messages, picture/video messages, and all other possible measures were used to accumulate maximum clinical information in real time. Unless contacted for trivial reasons, most children were later followed up telephonically to ensure health care concern was resolved and to fill up one 6-item trichotomous quality control questionnaire.
A total of 146 telephone consultations were performed in 51 participants. Thirty-six patients were identified to have 42 significant clinical events (worsening clinical status/partial response to medications [18; 44%], drug-related adverse effects [10; 19%], unrelated systemic complaints [7; 13%], and worsening of headache due to stress/triggers [7; 13%]). In the rest of the patients, the query of the caregiver included concern regarding COVID-19-related symptoms. Twenty-nine children required increment in drug dose or addition of new drug or commercial brand. Around 90% of caregivers were satisfied with the quality of teleconsultation.
Teleconsultation is a feasible and efficacious option, with excellent caregiver satisfaction for children with migraine.