Quality Assessment of Online Information on Body Contouring Surgery in Postbariatric Patient

Federico Lo Torto, Marco Marcasciano, Jacopo M Frattaroli, Juste Kaciulyte, Francesco L R Mori, Ugo Redi, Donato Casella, Emanuele Cigna, Diego Ribuffo
Aesthetic Plastic Surgery 2019 November 11

BACKGROUND: Nowadays, we have to face the fact that the Web represents one of the most important sources of information for patients. Postbariatric patients in particular are usually very motivated, and they are enthusiastic users of the Web as a source of information on the different types of surgery they could undergo after their weight loss in order to reshape and remodel their body thus regaining physical and functional wellness and dignity. The aim of the study was to assess information on the four most commonly performed postbariatric procedures worldwide, tummy tuck, breast, arm and thigh lift, with the same scale.

METHODS: Google and Yahoo have been probed for the keywords "Post bariatric Mastopexy OR breast lift" and "Post bariatric abdominoplasty OR tummy tuck" and "Post bariatric brachioplasty OR arm lift" and "post bariatric thigh lift". The first 50 hits were included, and the quality of information was evaluated with the expanded EQIP scale.

RESULTS: There was a critical lack of information about qualitative risks and side-effect description, treatment of potential complications, alert signs for the patient and precautions that the patient may take. Moreover, there was poor information about the sequence of the medical procedure, quantitative benefits and risks and quality of life issues after the procedure, and often, there were no other sources of information.

CONCLUSIONS: Due to the poor and not reliable information offered by the Web, health professionals should seek for a good communication practice with their patients.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE V: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine ratings, please refer to the Table of Contents or the online Instructions to Authors

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