Wrong diagnoses by Dr. Google

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Symptoms and diseases by Dr. Search Google: One in four women is misdiagnosed

Many people consult the internet for health complaints to get an initial assessment. But the self-research at "Dr. Google often leads to a wrong diagnosis, according to a British study. According to this, around one in four women make a false self-diagnosis based on Internet research and then buy the wrong medication, reports the English magazine "Daily Mail". It is not uncommon for the women to then suffer significant side effects from their misdiagnosis in addition to the original symptoms over a longer period of time, the study found.

Symptoms and diseases: The Internet as a point of contact Today, the Internet is the first point of contact for most health complaints. In their own research, those affected try “Dr. Google “to identify and interpret their symptoms. However, this often goes wrong. The study carried out on behalf of a women's health brand in the UK found that one in four women had already made a wrong diagnosis based on the search results, reports the "Daily Mail". Sometimes with fatal consequences. Around one in ten women suffered from misdiagnosis in the long term. Accordingly, searching for symptoms on the Internet also carries risks. The most common misdiagnoses made after internet research include breast cancer, vaginal yeast infections, high blood pressure, asthma, arthritis, depression, diabetes, venereal diseases and thyroid diseases. The misdiagnosis based on the information from “Dr. Google “caused around 20 percent of the more than 1,000 study participants surveyed that they feared suffering from a really serious illness for a long time. The other way around, bacterial vaginal infections of women in self-diagnosis are often confused with fungal infections and accordingly underestimated.

Feeling of shame and long waiting times Although most of those affected are aware of the uncertainties of self-diagnosis, symptom searches on the Internet are becoming increasingly popular. The British study cites the long waiting times for an appointment with the doctor as well as the feeling of shame with certain illnesses. If you suspect a fungal infection in the vaginal area, many would rather check Google for a moment than trust a doctor. The consequences are often considerable misjudgments, since the description of the symptoms on the Internet can often not be interpreted correctly without medical expertise. A description of every symptom and every illness can be found on the Internet, but a correct diagnosis usually always requires a doctor. The symptom description at "Dr. Google ”can only serve as an initial assessment and should never replace a visit to the doctor. The symptoms that women search for on the internet are, for example, sleep disorders, headache, depression, anxiety, muscle cramps, stomach cramps, chronic muscle pain, fatigue, dizziness and itching (often in connection with parts of the body, e.g. itchy vagina). (fp)

Image: Corinna Dumat / pixelio.de

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