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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 62  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 171-175

The effect of multimedia interventions on the informed consent process for cataract surgery in rural South India

1 David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
2 St. Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri, USA
3 Department of Statistics, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
4 Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
5 Eye Doctors of Washington, Chevy Chase, Maryland, USA

Correspondence Address:
Abraar Karan
University of California Los Angeles, 24800 Earls Court, Calabasas, CA 91302
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0301-4738.116488

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Context: The provision of ocular surgical interventions for poorer, less educated populations is increasing as a result of increased globalization and outreach. However, these populations still have trouble understanding surgical concepts and are not always fully informed decision makers. Aims: We aimed to test the effect that a multimedia addition to a traditional verbal informed consent would have on patient comprehension of relatively difficult cataract surgical concepts. Settings and Design: We conducted a randomized controlled trial with relatively uneducated patients reporting to a private surgical hospital in Chennai, India. 47 patients were placed into the intervention group and 50 patients were placed into the control group. Materials and Methods: The intervention group was presented with a scripted verbal informed consent as well as a 3-fold pamphlet and a presentation with a 3-dimensional model of the eye. The control group was only presented with a scripted verbal informed consent. The two groups were tested using an 11 item "True/False/I don't know" quiz directly before the informed consent, directly after the informed consent, and one-day postoperatively. Statistical Analysis Used: Scores on the quiz were compared across groups and time-points using paired t-tests. Results: Patients in the both groups showed a significant improvement in scores between pre- and post-informed consent quizzes (P value on the order of 10 -6 ) and the improvement in scores was significantly greater in the intervention group than the control group (P value on the order of 10 -16 ). There was no significant difference observed in either group with regards to the change in scores between post-informed consent and post-operative quizzes. Conclusion: Multimedia aids in addition to a standard informed consent process are effective in improving patient comprehension even for patients with low literacy and limited knowledge of surgical interventions.

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