Be wary of online medical info, doctors warn

Posted on 22 September 2011

People paying for long term care who look for medical information online should proceed with caution, it has been suggested.

After viewing the most popular YouTube videos about Parkinson's disease and other movement disorders, doctors concluded that the people in the films often did not actually have the condition.

In a letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a group of neurologists warned that this misinformation could confuse patients suffering from such neurological disorders.

Senior investigator Mark Hallett, at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, said: "Patients and doctors have to be very thoughtful and careful when looking for information on YouTube, as well as the Internet in general.

"There is a great deal of good information on the Internet, but one has to be careful."

This comes after pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith called for technology companies to make their devices easier to use, in order to increase the number of older people with access to the internet.

Posted by Nigel Murphy

 

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