The internet is a vast well of information these days, and health concerns are certainly a popular search, so Dr. Google is in the house with a new Knowledge Graph, updated to keep visitors as well aware of their conditions as possible.
The tech giant updated greatly upon both its search algorithm that would provide easier searches, and upped the ante from 400 conditions to over 900, a pack full with details, symptoms and visual aids of the disease you think you might be suffering from.
Self-diagnosing with the use of the internet is still not a good idea though. Extensive research on the infamous issue has resulted in the fact that only around 50% of the symptom checkers online provide an accurate analysis. That sums up the entire search experience to ‘hit or miss’, and it’s likely something most of us do not find good enough when it comes to our health.
In spite of this, in a study conducted by Harvard Medical School, around 30% of Americans resort to online diagnosis first, so Google has revamped its health services by providing users with better optimized information, along with more diseases tackled by the tech titan.
According to Google product manager, Prem Ramaswami, the company is “making sure to include neglected tropical disease, a set of infections that affect over 1.5 billion people, including 500 million children in poorer regions.” that were previously unaddressed directly through the search engine. It will now provide faster and better information for both the cautious and the anxious. Though hypochondriacs, beware.
The search engine will now include diseases like legionnaires, who has recently been a topic for news due to its outbreak in New York, along with others such as dengue fever, chikungunya, and leishmaniasis. No matter how likely or how rare the condition, Google will provide users with proper information in result of a collaboration with doctors from the Mayo Clinic.
So, you may rest assured that your answers will be provided through an organization that has been closely working with a high brand medical practice and research center. It’s certainly the better alternative than receiving a diagnosis from some random poster on Yahoo! Answers, which is notoriously known for ‘internet trolls’.
Google’s Knowledge Graph was first launched last February, and has provided similar diagnosis, but its accuracy is now reportedly improved, and their roster of diseases more than doubled. They now also added a “Download PDF” button, a highly requested option by doctors, so that patients who come into their office with a self-diagnosis can actually prove their sources.
So far, all the well detailed and researched information is made available in English, but the company has stated that they’re working on translations, so that all will be able to take advantage of their upgraded feature.
However qualified it may seem though, a visit to an actual doctor who can properly examine you should not be replaced. Google hasn’t graduated medical school, and while the researchers behind it had, they’re far away from you and can only provide meager estimations.
Image source: searchengineland.com