Session Title: Education (ARHP): Education/Community Programs
Session Type: Abstract Submissions (ARHP)
Background/Purpose: Osteoporosis, like many other chronic diseases, can have better outcomes when informed patients get involved in self-management, resulting in better ourtcomes. Bone health education publicly available through the Internet, if evidence-based and unbiased, could help patients to deal with issues such as decision making, maintaining healthy lifestyles, using medications correctly, and improving their communication with health professionals. The current study aimed to assess the quality of websites providing bone health-related information on the Internet.
Methods: We performed an environmental scan of the currently available osteoporosis and bone health patient education information on the World Wide Web. The sample websites were identified by using three separate search tools: Google Advanced, Bing, and Ask.com. We used the phrases “bone health” and “osteoporosis” in titles of Web pages and reviewed the first 100 results in each of the following domains: .gov, .org, & .com, plus links to 50 .edu websites. Only patient education websites were included. Websites that were part of clinical guidelines were excluded. Two independent investigators collected data regarding: information provided (accuracy and completeness), design, disclosures and references provided. Literacy was evaluated using the Flesch Grade Level readability formula.
Results: We identified 29 websites (92% non-profitable). Most websites were focused on risks factors of osteoporosis, preventive measures, screening recommendations, and topics to discuss with the physician. All websites provided adequate information describing treatment options; however, only 10.3% had information addressing duration of treatment, what happens when treatment stops, and the benefits and risks of various treatments. Only 50% of the websites had their content updated to 2014. Reading levels ranged from 7.8 to 14.8 (higher than the recommended 6-grade level). Ninety percent of the sites were static websites with no interactive features in their design; 94% were linear. Only 33% included an adequate disclosure statement and 25% cited their sources of information to support their content.
Conclusion: Websites with information about bone health and osteoporosis commonly fail to report adequate disclosure statements and sources of information. While they commonly present information about initial treatment choices, most fail to address risk-benefit issues, and common barriers than can occur throughout the course of the disease. In addition, most websites are written at a 9-grade level or above, rendering them unsuitable for low-literacy populations.
M. A. Lopez-Olivo,
M. E. Suarez-Almazor,
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ACR Meeting Abstracts - https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/quality-appraisal-of-educational-websites-on-osteoporosis-and-bone-health/