Background: Preeclampsia is a hypertensive disorder in pregnancy where a patients' blood pressure and warning signs of worsening disease need to be closely monitored during pregnancy and the postpartum period.
Introduction: No studies have examined remote patient monitoring using mobile health (m-health) technologies in obstetrical care for women with preeclampsia during the postpartum period. Remote monitoring and m-health technologies can expand healthcare coverage to the patient's home. This may be especially beneficial to patients with chronic conditions who live far from a healthcare facility.
Materials and methods: The study was designed to identify and examine the potential factors that influenced use of m-health technology and adherence to monitoring symptoms related to preeclampsia in postpartum women. A sample of 50 women enrolled into the study. Two participants were excluded, leaving a total sample size of 48 women. Users were given m-health devices to monitor blood pressure, weight, pulse, and oxygen saturation over a 2-week period. Nonusers did not receive equipment. The nurse call center monitored device readings and contacted participants as needed. Both groups completed a baseline and follow-up survey.
Results: Women who elected to use the m-health technology on average had lower levels of perceived technology barriers, higher facilitating condition scores, and higher levels of perceived benefits of the technology compared with nonusers. Additionally, among users, there was no statistical difference between full and partial users at follow-up related to perceived ease of use, perceived satisfaction, or perceived benefits.
Discussion: This study provided a basis for restructuring the management of care for postpartum women with hypertensive disorders through the use of m-health technology.
Conclusion: Mobile health technology may be beneficial during pregnancy and the postpartum period for women with preeclampsia to closely manage and monitor their blood pressure and warning signs of worsening disease.
Keywords: bluetooth; hypertension; m-health; postpartum; remote patient monitoring; telehealth; telemedicine.