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Quality of Patient Information Websites About Congenital Heart Defects: Mixed-Methods Study of Perspectives Among Individuals With Experience of a Prenatal Diagnosis.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, Research group (Dept. of women´s and children´s health), Clinical Psychology in Healthcare. (Klinisk psykologi i hälso- och sjukvård)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Languages, Department of Scandinavian Languages.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences.
Department of Women's and Children's Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
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2017 (English)In: Interactive journal of medical research, ISSN 1929-073X, Vol. 6, no 2, e15Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: When a heart defect is prenatally diagnosed in the fetus, expectant parents experience a great need for information about various topics. After the diagnosis, the Web is used for supplemental information, and the scarcity of research calls attention to the need to explore patient information websites from the perspectives of the intended consumers.

OBJECTIVE: The overarching aim of this study was to explore the quality of Swedish patient information websites about congenital heart defects, from the perspectives of individuals with experience of a prenatal diagnosis of congenital heart defect in the fetus.

METHODS: This was a mixed-methods study of websites identified through systematic searches in the two most used Web-based search engines. Of the total 80 screened hits, 10 hits led to patient information websites about congenital heart defects. A quality assessment tool inspired by a previous study was used to evaluate each website's appearance, details, relevance, suitability, information about treatment choices, and overall quality. Answers were given on a 5-point Likert scale, ranging from 1, representing the lowest score, to 5, representing the highest score. Each website was assessed individually by persons with experience of continued (n=4) and terminated (n=5) pregnancy following a prenatal diagnosis. Assessments were analyzed with Kendall's coefficient of concordance W, Mann-Whitney U test, Friedman's test, and a Wilcoxon-Nemenyi-McDonald-Thompson test. In addition, each assessor submitted written responses to open-ended questions in the quality assessment tool, and two joint focus group discussions were conducted with each group of assessors. The qualitative data were analyzed with inductive manifest content analysis.

RESULTS: Assessments represented a low score (median=2.0) for treatment choices and moderate scores (median=3.0) for appearance, details, relevance, suitability, and overall quality. No website had a median of the highest achievable score for any of the questions in the quality assessment tool. Medians of the lowest achievable score were found in questions about treatment choices (n=4 websites), details (n=2 websites), suitability (n=1 website), and overall quality (n=1 website). Websites had significantly different scores for appearance (P=.01), details (P<.001), relevance (P<.001), suitability (P<.001), treatment choices (P=.04), and overall quality (P<.001). The content analysis of the qualitative data generated six categories: (1) advertisements, (2) comprehensiveness, (3) design, (4) illustrations and pictures, (5) language, and (6) trustworthiness. Various issues with the included websites were highlighted, including the use of inappropriate advertisements, biased information, poor illustrations, complex language, and poor trustworthiness.

CONCLUSIONS: From the perspectives of the intended consumers, patient information websites about congenital heart defects are, to a large extent, inadequate tools for supplemental information following a prenatal diagnosis. Health professionals should initiate discussions with patients about their intentions to use the Web, inform them about the varied quality in the Web-based landscape, and offer recommendations for appropriate Web-based sources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 6, no 2, e15
Keyword [en]
Internet, congenital heart defects, consumer health information, information literacy, popular works, pregnancy, prenatal diagnosis
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-332587DOI: 10.2196/ijmr.7844PubMedID: 28899846OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-332587DiVA: diva2:1153461
Available from: 2017-10-30 Created: 2017-10-30 Last updated: 2017-10-30

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Carlsson, TommyMelander Marttala, UllaWadensten, BarbroAxelsson, OveMattsson, Elisabet
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Clinical Psychology in HealthcareDepartment of Scandinavian LanguagesDepartment of Public Health and Caring SciencesCentrum för klinisk forskning i Sörmland (CKFD)Obstetric research
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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