How a Johns Hopkins stroke patient got a diagnosis, treatment plan via telemedicine

Telemedicine at Johns Hopkins Medicine enabled a patient to receive a stroke diagnosis and treatment plan without actually going to the hospital. 

Sharon Graves received the diagnosis in late summer of 2021, after a telehealth appointment with her longtime practitioner Judy Greengold, MSN, CRNP, according to a Jan. 11 news release. Ms. Graves, the director of a hospital intensive care unit, experienced tingling in her arm and numbness in her mouth a day before her appointment. 

Ms. Graves' practitioner told her it could be more than stress. 

"We risked her having another, bigger neurological event that could permanently compromise her mobility or vision or another cognitive process," Ms. Greengold said. "She didn't want to go to the hospital but was willing to work with me to start the prevention measures and evaluate this comprehensively." 

Four hours after their call, Ms. Graves was getting a brain scan at a Johns Hopkins imaging center, which confirmed the stroke diagnosis. Within the next 24 hours, lab work was ordered and Ms. Graves was evaluated by a neurologist and cardiologist at offices near her home. 

"I’ve never seen this level of care coordination happen in primary care before," Ms. Greengold said. 

Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins has performed more than 1.2 million telemedicine visits since the pandemic began. 

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