Comparative effectiveness of telemedicine strategies on type 2 diabetes management: A systematic review and network meta-analysis Academic Article uri icon


  • The effects of telemedicine strategies on the management of diabetes is not clear. This study aimed to investigate the impact of different telemedicine strategies on glycaemic control management of type 2 diabetes patients. A search was performed in 6 databases from inception until September 2016 for randomized controlled studies that examined the use of telemedicine in adults with type 2 diabetes. Studies were independently extracted and classified according to the following telemedicine strategies: teleeducation, telemonitoring, telecase-management, telementoring and teleconsultation. Traditional and network meta-analysis were performed to estimate the relative treatment effects. A total of 107 studies involving 20,501 participants were included. Over a median of 6 months follow-up, telemedicine reduced haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) by a mean of 0.43% (95% CI: -0.64% to -0.21%). Network meta-analysis showed that all telemedicine strategies were effective in reducing HbA1c significantly compared to usual care except for telecase-management and telementoring, with mean difference ranging from 0.37% and 0.71%. Ranking indicated that teleconsultation was the most effective telemedicine strategy, followed by telecase-management plus telemonitoring, and finally teleeducation plus telecase-management. The review indicates that most telemedicine strategies can be useful, either as an adjunct or to replace usual care, leading to clinically meaningful reduction in HbA1c.

publication date

  • 2017