alexa Varicose veins on the internet.
Surgery

Surgery

Journal of Vascular Medicine & Surgery

Author(s): Libertiny G, Perkins JM, Magee TR, Galland RB

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Abstract OBJECTIVES: to evaluate the quality of information on the Internet concerning varicose veins. DESIGN: review of retrieved pamphlets and their scoring for educational value. MATERIALS: a sample of 41 documents were retrieved from the Internet using four "search engines". METHODS: characteristics, including country of origin, authorship, length, and presence of references were recorded. Based on factors such as disease summary, treatment options and complications a weighted score was created by two independent observers. RESULTS: eleven documents were published by an academic institution or professional organisation. Twenty-seven documents originated from private practice groups, the source of three was unidentifiable. The median weighted score was 21.5 (interquartile range: 7.5-48.5). Scores originating from non-profit making organisations were significantly higher than those from private practice groups (44.5 vs 13, p=0.04). The length of the document showed a significant positive correlation with its educational quality as measured by the information score (r=0.82, p<0.001). CONCLUSION: there is a plethora of data concerning varicose veins on the Internet. Some documents offer comprehensive information but many are confusing or misleading. Longer pamphlets and information presented by non-profit making organisations are more reliable than short documents and information offered by private medical groups. Copyright 2000 Harcourt Publishers Ltd. This article was published in Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg and referenced in Journal of Vascular Medicine & Surgery

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