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    Dr. Google is in: The ups and downs of unlimited Internet information

    Sydney, Australia—Medical information on the Internet is available 24/7 and knows no geographic limits. Patients can educate themselves while in bed, on the sofa, or while commuting.

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    Such access facilitates saving time, money, and embarrassment for patients in the most rapid way possible. The plus side is that they can empower themselves with additional information, possibly motivating them to make a medical appointment and making them feel more prepared for that intervention, according to Ivan Goldberg, MBBS, FRANZCO.A WebMD/Medscape Patient/Clinician Report Sept 2014: 1406 clinicians, 1102 patients (Graph courtesy of Ivan Goldberg, MBBS, FRANZCO)

     

    “Patients’ thirst for knowledge spans the entire spectrum from zero to obsessive overload and everything in between,” said Dr. Goldberg, Eye Associates, Sydney Eye Hospital, University of Sydney, Australia. “More than three-quarters of patients believe that they should use technology to assist in their diagnosis.”

    But can the machine replace a doctor?


     

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