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Int Urogynecol J. 2015 Apr;26(4):551-5. doi: 10.1007/s00192-014-2538-z. Epub 2014 Oct 25.

Quality of information on pelvic organ prolapse on the Internet.

Author information

1
The Division of Female Pelvic Medicine & Reconstructive Surgery, The Christ Hospital, The University of Cincinnati, 2123 Auburn Avenue Suite 307, 45219, Cincinnati, OH, USA.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION AND HYPOTHESIS:

This study aimed to determine the quality of available patient-centered information for pelvic organ prolapse (POP) on the Internet using a modified validated scale.

METHODS:

Two independent investigators using three search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing) searched and reviewed the top 30 unique sites for four terms: bladder prolapse; dropped bladder; uterine prolapse; dropped uterus. A total of 219 websites were reviewed by both reviewers excluding redundancies. A two-stage, 6-point rating scale with score range per question of 0-5 was developed from the DISCERN instrument. Also recorded was whether a site had Health On the Net (HON) Foundation certification. The 400 sites were (as stated) a separate search where in the the domain suffix for the top 100 sites per serach term was recorded.

RESULTS:

The summary of 400 sites reviewed across the four search terms identified 64 % .com, 19 % .org, 8 % .edu, 6 % other and 3 % .gov; .gov yielded the highest quality information. Only 23 (9.5 %) sites were HON certified, yet these sites possessed higher DISCERN scores (pā€‰<ā€‰0.0001). For the three questions referencing conservative treatments (i.e., pessary, physical therapy, watchful waiting), 115 (52 %) sites indicated a summed mean score of ā‰¤3, indicating less complete information regarding these treatments.

CONCLUSIONS:

Web-based information available to women regarding treatment for POP based on the modified DISCERN instrument is incomplete and biased toward surgical treatments. Government-sponsored websites (.gov) appear to provide the best quality information regarding this condition.

PMID:
25344222
DOI:
10.1007/s00192-014-2538-z
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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