Google and Women’s Health-Related Issues: What Does the Search Engine Data Reveal?
PDF
HTML

How to Cite

Abenhaim, H. A., & Baazeem, M. (2014). Google and Women’s Health-Related Issues: What Does the Search Engine Data Reveal?. Online Journal of Public Health Informatics, 6(2). https://doi.org/10.5210/ojphi.v6i2.5470

Abstract

Objectives: Identifying the gaps in public knowledge of women’s health related issues has always been difficult. With the increasing number of Internet users in the United States, we sought to use the Internet as a tool to help us identify such gaps and to estimate women’s most prevalent health concerns by examining commonly searched health-related keywords in Google search engine.

 

Methods: We collected a large pool of possible search keywords from two independent practicing obstetrician/gynecologists and classified them into five main categories (obstetrics, gynecology, infertility, urogynecology/menopause and oncology), and measured the monthly average search volume within the United States for each keyword with all its possible combinations using Google AdWords tool.

 

Results: We found that pregnancy related keywords were less frequently searched in general compared to other categories with an average of 145,400 hits per month for the top twenty keywords. Among the most common pregnancy-related keywords was “pregnancy and sex’ while pregnancy-related diseases were uncommonly searched. HPV alone was searched 305,400 times per month. Of the cancers affecting women, breast cancer was the most commonly searched with an average of 247,190 times per month, followed by cervical cancer then ovarian cancer.

 

Conclusion: The commonly searched keywords are often issues that are not discussed in our daily practice as well as in public health messages. The search volume is relatively related to disease prevalence with the exception of ovarian cancer which could signify a public fear.

https://doi.org/10.5210/ojphi.v6i2.5470
PDF
HTML
Authors own copyright of their articles appearing in the Online Journal of Public Health Informatics. Readers may copy articles without permission of the copyright owner(s), as long as the author and OJPHI are acknowledged in the copy and the copy is used for educational, not-for-profit purposes. Share-alike: when posting copies or adaptations of the work, release the work under the same license as the original. For any other use of articles, please contact the copyright owner. The journal/publisher is not responsible for subsequent uses of the work, including uses infringing the above license. It is the author's responsibility to bring an infringement action if so desired by the author.