• WQTC 102.3

Survey says 43% of Americans wrongly thought they had a serious disease after online searching

Author Kelly Oxford once said that the medical website "WebMD is like a 'Choose Your Own Adventure' book where the ending is always cancer."

Seems like people who consult "Dr. Google" for their medical symptoms also end up scaring themselves unnecessarily.

The survey of 2,000 Americans, commissioned by LetsGetChecked and conducted by OnePoll, noted that two in five people falsely convinced themselves they have a serious disease, based on their Google symptom search results.

While the poll noted 51% of people sought a professional opinion before turning to their laptop, 65% hit the Internet first, and those who did usually ended up scaring themselves.

In fact, 74% of those who have self-diagnosed via online searches made themselves worry more about their health, rather than less.

Fortunately -- or perhaps unfortunately -- Internet diagnoses are reliable only about 40% of the time, according to the poll.

So, to paraphrase Arnold in Kindergarten Cop, chances are "it's not a tumor." But check it out nonetheless.

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