The Internet has become one of the main sources of health information. Today, content generation is no longer limited to the healthcare professionals of the late nineties; Web 2.0 services and platforms have empowered patients to create and interact with various forms of Patient-Generated Content (PGC); these include: videos, blogs, and social networking pages, among others. This investigation evaluated the characteristics of PGC found within YouTube video comments. We selected a random sample of 25 out of 769 Multiple Sclerosis patient-generated videos and analyzed their corresponding 557 comments for health information. 320 comments met the inclusion criteria and 70 contained personal health information (PHI). Comments with PHI were sub-characterized for the type of medical information (i.e., diagnosis, date of diagnosis, medication, among others). In this descriptive study, we present the strata within this content and postulate some of the corresponding patient risks and ethical challenges associated with PGC found in YouTube video comments.
IOS Press, Inc.
6751 Tepper Drive
Clifton, VA 20124
Tel.: +1 703 830 6300
Fax: +1 703 830 2300 email@example.com
(Corporate matters and books only) IOS Press c/o Accucoms US, Inc.
For North America Sales and Customer Service
West Point Commons
Lansdale PA 19446
Tel.: +1 866 855 8967
Fax: +1 215 660 5042 firstname.lastname@example.org