Purpose: A rapid growth in the socioeconomic status of Koreans has triggered an unprecedented explosion of health information for the general population. Despite its obvious benefits, this increase in information could also result in potentially harmful effects for both consumers and professionals who do not use it appropriately. Thus, this study was conducted to evaluate the quality and accuracy of health information on erectile dysfunction from 10 nationwide daily newspapers. Materials and Methods: This study analyzed health information from 10 nationwide daily newspapers in Korea from January 2011 through December 2011. We reviewed the health information for quality by using evidence-based medicine tools and evaluated the accuracy of the information provided. Articles that simply summarized scientific congresses or journal articles and that did not include direct quotations were excluded, as were advertisements. Results: A total of 47 articles were gathered. Among them, 27 (57.4%) contained inaccurate or misleading statements on the basis of an evidence-based medicine evaluation. These statements included using inappropriate surrogate outcomes as clinical endpoints (three cases, 6.4%), extrapolating nonhuman results to humans (two cases, 4.3%), exaggerating the significance of results (eight cases, 17.0%), and using incorrect words (14 cases, 29.8%). The rate of error was higher in the information from Korean sources than in that from international sources (22 cases vs. 5 cases). Conclusions: Approximately 57% of all articles on erectile dysfunction from 10 nationwide daily newspapers were found to contain inaccuracies.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes